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China riskier than Brexit: English

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 2/07/2016 Cleo Fraser

Finance Minister Bill English says Britain's exit from the European Union has added risks to the global economy.

But the impact shouldn't be over-emphasised and other factors, such as the Chinese market, could have a greater impact on the New Zealand economy, he says.

"It is one factor that is now added to the risks to the global economy but just because it's this week's factor we probably don't want to over emphasis it," he told more than 500 delegates at the National Party's annual conference in Christchurch on Saturday.

"In fact the British economy is in better shape than many.

"While there's been a strong focus on Europe, probably the bigger risk for us is the growth of credit in the Chinese economy.

"We are relying on the Chinese to be as competent as they have been in the last 30 years in managing that problem without seeing some kind of bursting bubble which would upset Chinese growth and therefore upset the growth of the New Zealand economy."

Mr English said New Zealand no longer relied on the United Kingdom as much as it did 40 years ago.

He added that the country's economy was in a much better position than many other developed countries.

The National Party conference, which marks its 80th year, will finish up on Sunday when Prime Minister John Key will give his main speech and make a policy announcement.

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