China lifts export bans on most Australian beef

China has lifted a beef ban on Australian exports, as pandemic-era restrictions on several other exports are also removed.
China lifts beef ban

China has lifted a ban on Australian beef exports, the Federal Government has confirmed.

It comes after Chinese authorities imposed sanctions on several Australian exports during the pandemic. Several of these had already been repealed over the last 12 months, including wine and barley exports.

The meat industry has welcomed the decision, saying it will support Australian farmers.

China lifts beef ban

China announced several trade restrictions on an estimated $20 billion worth of Australian exports in 2020.

For some products, this took the form of added taxes, including heavy tariffs on Australian wine exports. Other products faced a complete trade ban, including products from 10 Australian meat exporters.

This week, China reversed a ban on five beef exporters. It comes after three suspended exporters had their bans lifted in December. Two others are still banned from exporting meat to China.

Beef bans

China’s decision to resume trade with five Australian meat exporters will take immediate effect.

Agriculture Minister Murray Watt told the ABC it was “fantastic news” for Australia’s farming and meat industries.

Watt said now-reversed trade bans had boosted Australian exports to China by $3 billion in recent months.

Industry response

Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) CEO Patrick Hutchinson called the Chinese market “incredibly important” to the Australian meat industry.

He said the lifted export ban was a “fantastic result” for the businesses, customers and workers impacted by the trade bans. Hutchinson added that Australian exporters will now have the chance to expand into the Chinese market.

AMIC said it will advocate for the remaining two exporters to have their suspensions lifted “as a matter of priority”.

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