China launches anti-dumping investigation into Australian wine exports

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China’s Ministry of Commerce announced Monday it has launched an anti-dumping investigation into Australian wine exports.

This happened after China sanctioning Australian beef and barley and warning both tourists and students not to travel to Australia just months before.

Trade Minister Simon Birmingham said Chinese authorities also warned Australia they may launch a second investigation into whether the Australian wine exports were benefitting from government subsidies.

“This is a very disappointing and perplexing development,” Senator Birmingham said.

Last year Australian wine exports to China were valued at $1.25 billion, more than a third of the whole wine export market.

“The move is likely to arouse renewed suspicions in Canberra that China is using its economic heft to punish Australia,” said foreign affairs reporter Stephen Dziedzic.

Beijing’s bitter wine backlash will have ‘major impact’ on Australian producers, and experts are describing China’s latest move against the Australian wine industry as “retaliation” over the country’s calls for a virus probe, News Corps reported.

China’s investigation is expected to be completed by August 18, 2021, under normal circumstances, but could be prolonged until February 18, 2022, due to the coronavirus pandemic, a Chinese ministry statement said.

By Winnie Troppie

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