Business Maverick

Business Maverick

China ‘very close’ to ending Australia wine tariffs, business chief says

China ‘very close’ to ending Australia wine tariffs, business chief says
A worker walks through the processing yard at Rob Dolan Estate in Warrandyte South, Victoria, Australia, on Monday, March 18, 2024.

The Chinese government is “very close” to lifting the heavy tariffs on Australian wine imports, a business lobby said, while tempering expectations about all producers returning to the market after the sanctions are lifted.

The Australia China Business Council hosted a meeting for business leaders with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi during his visit to Australia this month, where Beijing’s top diplomat emphasised that his country was “opening up” to foreign investment, according to the lobby group’s National President David Olsson.

Olsson, in an interview with Bloomberg on the sidelines of the Boao Forum in China on Wednesday, said while Australian businesses understood the importance of the China market, there were concerns about the need for predictability and certainty, particularly with longer term investments.

“Australian business leaders are under no illusions that we’re going to go back to the good old days, those things have gone past,” he said. “Geopolitical tensions will remain.”

Economic relations between Australia and its largest trading partner China have improved markedly since the election of the centre-left Labour government in May 2022. Trade sanctions imposed by Beijing on Australian exports at the height of tensions have steadily been lifted, including restrictions on barley, timber and coal.

The largest remaining sanctions are those on Australian wine, including tariffs as high as 218%. The Australian government is hopeful the wine tariffs will be lifted by the end of March.

“We’re getting very close certainly in relation to the removal of tariffs around wine, which is a big one for Australia,” said Olsson.

“We expect to see a significant proportion of the wine coming back into China, but not all of it. A lot of it is just looking to other markets.”

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

X

This article is free to read.

Sign up for free or sign in to continue reading.

Unlike our competitors, we don’t force you to pay to read the news but we do need your email address to make your experience better.


Nearly there! Create a password to finish signing up with us:

Please enter your password or get a sign in link if you’ve forgotten

Open Sesame! Thanks for signing up.

We would like our readers to start paying for Daily Maverick...

…but we are not going to force you to. Over 10 million users come to us each month for the news. We have not put it behind a paywall because the truth should not be a luxury.

Instead we ask our readers who can afford to contribute, even a small amount each month, to do so.

If you appreciate it and want to see us keep going then please consider contributing whatever you can.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options

Become a Maverick Insider

This could have been a paywall

On another site this would have been a paywall. Maverick Insider keeps our content free for all.

Become an Insider
Elections24 Newsletter Banner

On May 29 2024, South Africans will make their mark in another way.

Get your exclusive, in-depth Election 2024 newsletter curated by Ferial Haffajee delivered straight to your inbox.