Last November, China and Australia announced China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, under negotiation since 2005, will be signed in 2015. As we previously wrote about here, one important clause in this FTA stipulates China will eliminate most tariffs on Australian dairy products. In 2008, China and New Zealand signed a similar FTA, opening up the Chinese market to New Zealand dairy exports. Demand for imported dairy products in China has spiked since 2008, and New Zealand, with its existing trade deal, has captured a large share of the total dairy exports to China. On the other hand, Australia, which currently faces tariffs of 10-15% on its dairy exports to China, has not seen a large increase of its exports to China along with the increased Chinese demand. This week’s chart shows the value of dairy exports to China, in millions of US dollars, for the world, Australia, and New Zealand. Total imports for dairy products in China reached $6 billion in 2013.
Dairy exports to China, 1991-2013
Note: dairy includes milk, cheese and butter products (HS codes 401-406) source: WITS database, World Bank