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China Threatens Australian Wine Imports With Anti-Dumping Investigation

August 18, 2020

China is rattling its saber against imported wines from Australia, with its commerce ministry opening an anti-dumping investigation into Aussie imports in containers of two-liters or less. The announcement sent shares of Treasury Wine Estates lower by about 14% as investors worried about possible tariffs resulting from the probe. China’s new wine investigation follows recent trade measures against Australian beef and barley imports, as tensions among the two nations have risen in recent months.

According to Wine Australia, China is the top market by value for Aussie exports, worth A$1.1 billion ($800m) on a 0.7% increase in the year through June. Value per liter increased 22%.

In a statement, Treasury said it will cooperate with the investigation, adding that its “focus will remain on building premium and luxury brands, investing in the local operating model and team, and working with partners to enhance the wine category and grow our contribution to China.” Last week, Treasury noted that it saw a 13% increase in depletions in China in the three months through June, after significant declines early in the year due to Covid-19.—Daniel Marsteller

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