Australia lowers its forecast for beef exports to China as relations deteriorate

Australia’s chief commodity forecaster lowered its expected beef exports to China by 1.5 percent for the 2020 to 2021 season as trade ties sour between the nations.
calendar icon 16 June 2020
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Reuters reports that the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) expects China to buy 227,000 tonnes of beef in the year to 30 June 2021, compared to 230,000 tonnes in its March estimate. That would amount to 30 percent less than in the 2019 trading period.

The lower forecast comes after China suspended exports for four of Australia's largest beef exporters earlier in May, citing labelling issues. Australian government sources have said recent bilateral tensions are likely behind the suspension.

Labelling issues were also cited by Beijing when the same companies and two others lost their licences to ship beef to China in 2017 for several months.

Australian-China relations soured after Canberra called for an independent inquiry into the origins of the novel coronavirus.

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