China Dismantles One of the Last Trade Barriers

China has lifted a ban on five of Australia’s biggest red meat exporters with “immediate effect”, Australia’s agriculture minister said Thursday, dismantling one of the last barriers in an easing trade dispute.

“That is fantastic news for Australia’s cattle producers, for the meat processing industry, for the workers in those industries and, of course, for Australian exports,” Senator Watt told the ABC Breakfast program this morning (30 May). “What we’ve worked out is that even so far as over the export bans that have been lifted by China, that has worked out to $3b in extra exports for Australia.”

Starting in 2020, a slew of Australia’s most lucrative export commodities were effectively banned from China as the two countries fought a bitter trade dispute

The Chinese government also imposed a snap ban on Australian lobster, which remains in place. Trade barriers on other Australian-made products including barley, cotton and wine have progressively lifted since 2022.

A Joint Media Release on 30 May 2024 announced: China lifts suspensions on five meat establishments. It is from:
Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong
Minister for Trade and Tourism, Senator the Hon Don Farrell
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator the Hon Murray Watt

Here is the text:

The Australian Government has confirmed that China’s suspension of five meat processing establishments has been lifted with immediate effect.

Eight beef processing facilities have now had suspensions lifted, while two facilities remain suspended.

We continue to press China to remove the remaining trade impediments, including for Australia’s rock lobster industry.

The progress so far affirms the calm and consistent approach taken by the Albanese Labor Government.

Trade impediments imposed by China prior to the May 2022 election resulted in a $20.6 billion reduction in exports.

China’s progressive removal of impediments since then, including today’s announcement, means less than $1 billion worth of exports remain impeded.

The lifting of impediments has already had a real-world impact – to the tune of more than $11.5 billion – for Australian barley, cotton, oaten hay, wine, coal, copper ores and timber logs.

The Australian Government’s approach is to cooperate with China where we can, disagree where we must and engage in our national interest.

Trade diversification is a key element of the Government’s trade policy strategy. The Government will continue to support Australian businesses to sell their world-class products on the global stage.

See this related article from our archives: China Meeting to Improve Trade Relations

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