28 Aug 2019

Bridges ‘open to change’ regarding foreign donations

From Morning Report, 7:25 am on 28 August 2019
Simon Bridges pictured 21 May 2019

Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

New Zealand's spy agencies say they know of troubling foreign donations across the political spectrum.

The agencies have told MPs they support greater transparency around political donations, but warn that a ban on foreign money would be no silver bullet.

This follows revelations that in 2016 the National Party received a donation of $150,000 from a company owned by a Chinese billionaire.

National Party leader Simon Bridges joins our Wellington studio to speak to Corin Dann and said he is waiting to see what the select committee decides.

"I think there is a distinction to be drawn though, between someone who may not be a New Zealand resident or citizen, who is in New Zealand, who has a connection here - and the issue of foreign influence. And it's the latter that we really want to get to," Mr Bridges said.

Read more here: 

NZ spy agencies call for greater transparency on political donations

National denies former trade minister Todd McClay helped facilitate $150k donation