A fire at a Chinese research centre in Wellington is being treated as suspicious.

The fire broke out early this morning at the Contemporary Chinese Research Centre on Kelburn Parade.

Fire and Emergency shift manager Carlos Dempsey told the Herald the fire started on the exterior of the building before spreading to the inside of the ground and second floor.

A specialist investigator and the police are still at the scene of the fire.

The research centre is funded by Victoria University of Wellington.

According to its website, the centre promotes knowledge and understanding of contemporary China in New Zealand through research, conferences, lectures, seminars, visiting scholars and short courses.

A spokesperson for the university declined to comment when contacted by the Herald, saying the situation was in the hands of police.

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