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Friday, 24 March 2017 14:12

ChAFTA boost

The Coalition Government has signed a joint statement with China to deliver important market access for Australia’s red meat and live animal export industries.

The deal that also promotes food safety and security is a key outcome of the visit of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and is estimated to be worth in excess of $400 million per year for Australia’s meat industry.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said the statement will expand and improve Australia’s meat market access by allowing more meat and live animal exporters access to China and progressing new trade opportunities. 
“The Coalition is committed to building on our record prices and record volume of trade with China. We won’t ever rest on our laurels in pursuit of expanding Australia’s trading partnerships,” Minister Joyce said.
“I am proud to sign this joint statement with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi today to deliver a valuable and mutually beneficial agreement that will support our relationship with one of our most important trading partners.
“Through the Joint Statement on Enhancing Inspection and Quarantine Cooperation, we are helping more Australian meat exporters expand access to China, including more chilled meat.
“Industry has estimated that the trade this Joint Statement will facilitate could be worth in excess of $400 million per year to our meat industry, which could lead to significantly improved farmgate returns across the nation.”
The joint statement will unlock a number of trade restrictions currently in place to support Australian meat and livestock exports including:

  • expanding the chilled meat trade and expediting the listing of 15 additional establishments eligible to export meat to China;
  • advancing Australia’s access for tripe exports to China and initiating trade in donkey meat and edible skins to China; and
  • promoting a protocol for the export of Australian slaughter sheep and goats.

“China is already Australia’s largest sheep meat market, worth $240 million in 2016, and is our fourth largest beef market worth $670 million in the same year,” Joyce said.
“Together Australia and China are focused on promoting food security and safety and ensuring continued access to safe, high quality and reliable produce.”
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Steven Ciobo, said increasing the number of approved meat processing establishments will create more export opportunities for red meat trade with China.
"Australia’s beef exports to China have grown from less than $100 million in 2011 to exceed $600 million in 2016," he said.
"Today’s agreement will enable Australian beef producers to continue meeting China’s growing demand for high-quality beef.
"This, alongside continued cuts under ChAFTA to the tariffs Australian beef faces in China, will bring further significant benefits for regional Australia and employment in the red meat industry."

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