Australia's China export slumps by 96 percent

Demand in other countries was able to offset losses.

There is significantly higher demand in Europe and North America, in particular / Graphic: Wine Australia
There is significantly higher demand in Europe and North America, in particular / Graphic: Wine Australia

Australia's winemakers exported only A$12 million (US$9.33 million) to mainland China between December 2020 and March 2021. That's a 96 percent drop. In the same period last year, Wine Australia figures show that the figure was A$325 million (US$252 million).

The background is the trade dispute with China. End of November, the country imposed high tariffs on imports of Australian wine on the grounds that Australian winemakers were using dumping methods in order to gain market advantages over domestic producers in China. For the year to March 2021, exports to mainland China have slumped by about 24 percent to A$869 million (US$675 million), down 40 percent to 78 million litres.

Overall, Australia has seen a one percent drop in volume (to 724 million litres) and a four percent drop in value for the 12 months to March 2021. This amounted to A$2.77 billion (US$2.15 billion). The slump in the Chinese market was thus partially cushioned by sales to other countries. Previously, about a third of Australia's wine exports went to China.

Demand increased in the UK in particular with export value growing by a third to A$461 million (US$385 million), an increase of 21 percent to 264 million litres. Exports to Europe also grew sharply, rising 23 percent to A$710 million (US$552 million), the highest level in a decade. Germany has gained a priority here: an increase of 22 percent to 36 million liters in volume and 19 percent in value to A$56 million (US$43 million). Trade with the United States also picked up, increasing four percent to A$432 million (US$335 million), a remarkable result as the volume fell one percent to 135 million liters. aw

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