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Australia takes wine dispute with China to WTO

CommoditiesJun 18, 2021 11:30PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Bottles of Australian wine are seen at a store selling imported wine in Beijing, China November 27, 2020. REUTERS/Florence Lo

By Lidia Kelly

MELBOURNE (Reuters) -The Australian government said on Saturday it was lodging a formal complaint with the World Trade Organization over China's imposition of anti-dumping duties on Australian wine exports, escalating further the trade standoff with Beijing.

"The government will continue to vigorously defend the interests of Australian wine makers using the established system in the WTO to resolve our differences," Dan Tehan, minister for trade, tourism and investment, said in a joint press release with the Agriculture Minister David Littleproud.

Relations with China, already rocky after Australia banned Huawei from its nascent 5G broadband networking in 2018, have worsened since Canberra called for an international inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus, first reported in central China last year.

China, Australia's largest trading partner, responded by imposing tariffs on Australian commodities, including wine and barley and limited imports of Australian beef, coal and grapes, moves described by the United States as "economic coercion".

Last year, Australia launched a formal appeal to the WTO seeking a review of China's decision to impose hefty tariffs on imports of Australian barley.

The wine tariffs doubled or tripled its price and made the Chinese market unviable for exporters, the Australian government had said earlier.

Australian winemakers shipped just A$12 million ($9 million) of wines to China in the four months from December to March, from A$325 million a year earlier, industry figures showed, confirming that hefty new tariffs have all but wiped out their biggest export market.

Earlier in June, Prime Minister Scott Morrison called on the WTO to address the standoff between the two countries and days later won the support of the Group of Seven countries for a tougher stance against China's growing impact on global trade.

On Saturday, the government said that despite the complaint, Canberra was ready to cooperate with Beijing.

"Australia remains open to engaging directly with China to resolve this issue," Tehan and Littleproud said in their release.

Australia takes wine dispute with China to WTO
 

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Comments (12)
LLamaNation Gamer
LLamaNation Gamer Jun 19, 2021 2:37PM ET
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Trade is willing buyers/sellers. If China broke WTO rules, let it be handled according to the WTO. May i remind you tgat there’s no judge panel in the WTO to rule on cases. Why? Yep. Australia best friend America is halting all judge appointments by blocking it. Why?
Edward Stanislaus
Edward Stanislaus Jun 19, 2021 3:12AM ET
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Trade works on willing buyer, willing seller. When we criticise our partner, we should expext some form of retaliation. Australia should stop being a cry-baby & look to other markets.
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 3:12AM ET
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I see Edward, so you support China's unethical behavior.
Yong Lee
Yong Lee Jun 19, 2021 3:12AM ET
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Well said Edward,how can you criticise and humiliate your biggest client and expect the relationship remain the same? Australia should not depend so much on China, get business from US and Europe. 🍾
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 3:03AM ET
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China has become a country of dishonor.
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 3:03AM ET
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Give examples... I think you read too much western narrative propaganda news... do some real research on your own...
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 2:58AM ET
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China's despicable behavior towards Hong kong, Taiwan, Japan, Australia,David shall I go on......
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 2:58AM ET
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Hong Kong and Taiwan are China's internal affairs, Japan we already know the history, Australia not too smart...
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 12:58AM ET
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Most of you guys don't understand how diplomacy works... China understand this really well just by watching them make deals on the international stage....
Edward Chong
Edward Chong Jun 19, 2021 12:58AM ET
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i dont understand why u like to be public enemy. mr wong
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 12:58AM ET
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David, you mean the financial strong arming done to weaker countries by China.
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 12:58AM ET
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but most of us do David, its China that's forgotten how diplomacy is supposed to work.
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 12:54AM ET
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You guys watch.... it will take years before China will return relations with Australia... they humiliated the hands that fed them...
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 12:54AM ET
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just more brutal bullying by China a pathetic paranoid dictatorship.
Rathindra Mukherjee
Rathindra Mukherjee Jun 19, 2021 12:47AM ET
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Market in India, Wine culture is in its nascence state and we are heavy drinkers :-)
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 12:47AM ET
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India doesn't know how to enjoy wine... not like Chinese people...
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 12:47AM ET
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so you're saying the Chinese are heavy drinkers. that's understandable they live in a country run by people that build slave labor camps.
Higo Jack
Higo Jack Jun 19, 2021 12:47AM ET
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India is poor country how enjoy wine
Rathindra Mukherjee
Rathindra Mukherjee Jun 19, 2021 12:47AM ET
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Higo Jack  The inequality in our society is huge, Like the city of Dhaka (Bangladesh capital) has higher number of millionaires than Singapore. Similar stats in all Indian cities, if marketed properly there's huge untapped market for wine in India. Already there's are a few Vineyards in Nasik Maharashtra, and look at their growth - https://sulavineyards.com/
Todd Gray
Todd Gray Jun 19, 2021 12:00AM ET
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nobody in the free world needs China. Nixon opened the door to them. if China closed its doors again, in a few years we'd be on our feet and running smooth. uber liberal babble aside, they are the outsiders in the free world.
David David
David9 Jun 19, 2021 12:00AM ET
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Who told you they don't need China? China is the biggest trading partners for almost everyone. China is the real economic machine of this world. You speak out before you think, very bad and uneducated....
Ad Cline
Ad Cline Jun 19, 2021 12:00AM ET
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China will in the end, be confined to the dustbin of histort, along with the German Third Reich.
Tho Nguyen
Tho Nguyen Jun 18, 2021 11:59PM ET
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China is known to bully other countries when it comes to international policy and trade
David David
David9 Jun 18, 2021 11:59PM ET
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Give an example... China does not bully, but they will strike back when someone strike them... especially when other use false info to smear China, they will suffer until an apology is made....
Harsha Rao
Harsha Rao Jun 18, 2021 11:48PM ET
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Chinese hegemony needs to be halted. And it needs united efforts of all progressive nations.
David David
David9 Jun 18, 2021 11:48PM ET
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That is not what is happening... the world needs China for it's economic trading powerhouse...
Nick Glaser
Nick Glaser Jun 18, 2021 11:37PM ET
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The more you depend on China for anything the more you belong to them. Where can I buy a case of your fine Australian Shiraz?
David David
David9 Jun 18, 2021 11:18PM ET
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Austrialia is not smart... if they want China to buy then they need to apologize in public what they did wrong and relation will get back...
Todd Gray
Todd Gray Jun 18, 2021 11:18PM ET
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apologize for what? being a free people who don't have to bow down to anybody? move to China, if you don't like liberty.
 
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