Progress with Australian log trade to China

Friday 24 Mar 2023

China and Australia are making progress over the resumption of Australian timber exports to China in the latest sign of the normalisation of trade between the two countries, an industry official said on Wednesday reports Reuters.

The once AU$600 million annual trade with China has been largely suspended since late 2020 after Beijing said it had found pests in shipments coming from several Australian ports.

Chinese customs recently sent Australian agriculture officials a list of technical rules that must be met to resume log imports, which had since been sent to industry, Victor Violante, head of the Australian Forest Products Association, told Reuters.

When Reuters first reported the start of timber talks in February, Violante was optimistic trade could resume within six months. He maintains that view. “What we’re trying to work through is certainly things that we could work through in a matter of months not years,” he said on Wednesday.

Violante said the timber industry was working with Australia’s agriculture department to study how to apply the new rules. China and Australia are edging closer to an economic rapprochement more than two years after China restricted imports of commodities including coal, timber and barley during a nadir in diplomatic relations.

Source: Reuters

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