Perth [Australia]May 15 (ANI): Although China has imposed punitive trade restrictions on Australian coal, barley, meat and wine, it is spending more than ever on Australian imports.
Helen Clarke, writing for the Asia Times, said those worried about Beijing’s possible impact on Australia may feel justified after the agony of 2020 and 2021. trade war those entrenched in geopolitics have not hurt the Australian economy or its critical commodity exports, she said.
Indeed, China is spending more than ever on imports from Australia, given its dependence on iron ore and liquefied natural gas (LNG), two commodities that are increasingly priced in global markets and for which Australia is the largest. exporter to the world.
So far, China has hit Australian coal, barley, meat, lobsters and wine with punitive trade measures in response to Australia’s call for an independent investigation into the Covid-19 pandemic, which, by all credible sources, began in Wuhan. China, Asia Times reports.
Meanwhile, Australia’s 1 billion AD wine industry reported a 96 percent drop in exports in the first quarter of 2021 after China’s anti-dumping sanctions cut profits in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Following the recent announcement of an “indefinite” end to the Sino-Australian Strategic Economic Dialogue, China is now clearly moving beyond beef and booze and targeting Australian LNG exports.
But Australian shipments to China have actually increased this year, with 29 shipments in February, 37 in March and 43 in April. The 43 shipments from Australia to China in April were just below the record, according to the tracking data, Adelaide-based consulting firm EnergyQuest said in its April LNG and gas monthly report released May 14.
Meanwhile, commodity commentators say China’s moves against LNG imports from Australia will herald a major escalation in their trade war… Australia is the largest supplier of LNG to China; China and Japan change from month to month as the largest fuel importers.
Of course, Australian coal has suffered. Australian cargo has been banned from China – the world’s largest importer – for almost a year, Clark said, prompting calls for a reasoned diplomatic solution.
The coal dispute, which began years ago under Prime Ministers Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull, has since flared up under Scott Morrison over a series of futile reboots.
Commodity commentator Clyde Russell says China coal imports decreased by 20.5% in April compared to the previous month and by almost 30% compared to last year. China pays twice as much for Russian coal of the same calorific value as that produced in New South Wales. China also receives more coal of lower quality from Indonesia.
Meanwhile, Australian coal producers are starting to switch to other markets, including India, the world’s second largest importer. India’s imports of Australian coal hit a record 6.75 million tonnes in January before the country’s Covid disaster struck.
Australia’s thermal coal exports to India totaled 1.87 million tonnes in December 2020, up 450 percent from 340,000 tonnes in December 2019, according to commodity price news agency Argus.
In addition, Australia has free trade agreements (FTAs) with the largest economies in Asia Singapore (2003), Thailand (2005), Malaysia (2013), Korea (2014), Japan (2015), Indonesia (2019) and Hong Kong ( 2020). According to the Asia Times, he is currently working on an agreement with India.
Australia and China signed a free trade agreement, CHA.FTA, in December 2015 after years of negotiations.
For Australia, this was based on the continued promise of access to China’s burgeoning middle class and, in addition to wholesale goods, more expensive supplies such as wine and, ultimately, services.
Fast forward to the present, it doesn’t work that way. China has already warned its students cannot return to Australia, threatening to deprive it of its single largest source of full-tuition foreign students, Clarke wrote.
The current Defense Secretary Peter Dutton recently promised to study all the agreements of states with China, including the very controversial ones. Port of Darwin lease for 99 years belongs to the Chinese company Landbridge Group.
The cancellation of the contract, according to EnergyQuest, could force China to come to grips with LNG contracts, Clarke wrote.
Canberra has already canceled Victoria’s 2018 agreement with China to participate in the Belt and Road Initiative, while the latest move is that China-funded Confucius Institutes could be closed under the new bill about the veto. (ANI)