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Trade Update – 5 Nov 2020

Trade Update – 5 Nov 2020

Weekly trade review provided by Chatto Creek Advisory Pty. 

 Chatto Creek Advisory Pty Ltd is a Melbourne-based strategic consultancy specializing in trade policy advice and government engagement strategy. It is headed by Russell Scoular, an executive with rich government relations, trade policy, and business experience throughout the Asia Pacific.

AUSTRALIA’S CHINA TRADE TENSIONS DETERIORATE
Australia is busy looking to the reasons for customs delays by China for more export goods including lobster, timber and barley. Media reports suggest wheat and sugar maybe next. It follows anti-dumping inquiries and delays for barley, beef, coal, wine and cotton.

CHINA’S CALL FOR AUSTRALIAN TRUST
China wants Australia to bring bilateral relations back on track as soon as possible. In the face of a deteriorating trade relationship, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang said China hoped Australia would take more actions conducive to mutual trust and bilateral cooperation.

INDIA LOOKS TO BOOST PRODUCE SUPPLIES
India has in the past week moved to reduce pricing pressures and local shortages on a range of produce including potatoes, onions and pulses. Its actions include a boost to imports, export bans, stocking restrictions and tariff quota reductions.

THAILAND LOSES US TARIFF PREFERENCES
The US has suspended GSP tariff preferences for $US817 million of goods from Thailand in protest at a lack of progress for providing the US with market access for pork products. It covers 231 products. A review of Indonesia’s GSP access has been closed with no change.

WTO LEADER CHOICE FACES TOUGH TIME
The WTO’s choice of a new leader faces a tough time. A majority of members support Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (Nigeria). However, the US is championing Yoo Myung-hee (Korea) claiming only she can lead the necessary trade reforms. The next key meeting is November 9.

NZ GETS NEW TRADE MINISTER
Damien O’Connor has been named as Minister for Trade & Export Growth in a post-election Cabinet. He will continue as Minister for Agriculture. He succeeds David Parker in the trade portfolio. O’Connor has previously represented NZ at a number of regional trade meetings.

ASEAN MATTRESSES GET A US DUTY BOUNCE
Five ASEAN economies – Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam – face preliminary anti-dumping duties in the US of between 2.61 per cent and 989 per cent on mattresses. US mattress exports from the five economies were worth $US360 million in 2019.

INDONESIA & HONG KONG BEGIN ACTIONS
Indonesia has launched a safeguard investigation into imported cigarette paper. It follows a complaint by the Indonesia Pulp and Paper Association. Meanwhile, Hong Kong has started WTO dispute action over new US laws that its goods be labelled Made in China.

US LAUNCHES THERMAL PAPER INQUIRY
The US Commerce Department has launched an anti-dumping inquiry into imported thermal paper from Germany, Japan, Korea and Spain. It follows a petition by US producers who allege dumping margins for the two Asian economies of between 56% and 140%.

WTO HIGHLIGHTS LOW COMPLIANCE
The WTO’s Subsidies & Countervailing Measures Committee has fired off at the “chronic” low levels of reporting compliance by members of the global trade body. It says 83 have not filed their 2019 subsidy returns, 68 have not filed their 2017 returns and 58 their 2015 returns.

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