China to impose anti-subsidy duties on Aussie wine
Published: Dec 10, 2020 12:12 PM

Bottles of Penfolds Grange, made by Australian wine maker Penfolds and owned by Australia's Treasury Wine Estates, sit on a shelf for sale at a wine shop in central Sydney, Australia, August 4, 2014. Photo: Xinhua/REUTERS

China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) announced Thursday that China will impose temporary anti-subsidy duties on wine imported from Australia starting on Friday - nearly two weeks after China imposed anti-dumping tariffs on the Aussie wine.

In a statement on Thursday, the MOFCOM said that after investigation into imported Australian wine, it was concluded that Australian subsidies have caused substantial damage to China's domestic wine industry.

According to the statement, China will impose temporary anti-subsidy duties on wines originating from Australia in containers holding under two liters, but it did not say how long will the measure last.

Nearly two weeks ago, China imposed provisional anti-dumping measures in the form of deposits on wine imported from Australia, with the deposits ranging from 107.1 to 212.1 percent. 

China is Australia's largest offshore wine destination purchasing nearly 40 percent of Australia's total wine exports, according to Wine Australia. 

Since the two countries signed a free trade agreement in 2015 to 2019, market share for Australian win in China has risen by 8.9 percent. The value of China imported Australian wine increased from $520 million in 2016 to $1.7 billion in 2019.

Beijing's move comes at a time when ties between China and Australia have suffered from ongoing friction caused by Australia call for an investigation in to China's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, strongly hinting that the virus originated in China.