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It came as Chinese spinning mills were warned not to use Australian cotton and Chinese regulators began probing Australian wine production. Australia is heavily dependent on this one source of international cash flow. Not much of the trade war makes sense. From land to airports, China's controlling interest in Australian resources is on the rise. This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced. Share. Research director for the Perth USAsia Centre Dr Jeff Wilson agrees: “A trade war requires two sides to exchange sanctions, this is more like a trade bashing.”. “This is the reality, whether we like it or not,” warns La Trobe University Fellow Tony Walker. Save. We have a major leverage point if the government is brave enough to step in and start making controls around price and supply.”, China needs Australia’s iron ore to continue with its huge building projects. It wasn't the last time Chinese Customs would cause major delays to Australian exports. And that, in turn, could unsettle Mr Xi’s own populace. “We hope the Australian side will admit to the real reason, look at China and China’s development objectively, earnestly handle our relations based on principles of mutual respect and equal treatment and do more to enhance mutual trust and co-operation.”. Now it’s lobster, timber and wine. “These unrestrained attacks and repeated humiliations of Australia look bizarre, but they are engineered to suit a couple of specific purposes for the totalitarian regime in China: one domestic, the other global,” says associate professor in China Studies, Chongyi Feng. “Again, this is not making a case for excusing China’s bad behaviour, or somehow suggesting the customer is always right. China has clearly set out to wage economic — and psychological — warfare against Australia. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian on Friday commented on the recent reports of Australian "war crimes", saying that he was shocked by the details disclosed in the investigation report and strongly condemned such violations of … Picture: STR/AFPSource:AFP. Beijing claimed the tariffs were a result of anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures against Australia, though Canberra and the grains industry have denied China's allegations that Australian farmers are heavily subsidised. The fallout, they add, will cascade like a tsunami through the extensive support services built around Australia’s mining industry. Australia is a mid-sized, open, and multicultural democracy. “Needless to say, if a Chinese provincial party secretary signed an agreement with Australia which Beijing had not sanctioned, he or she would be sacked forthwith,” McGregor writes. Don't have an account? Picture: Adam Taylor Adam Taylor/PMO.Source:Supplied, “We have conducted simulations of the effect of shutting down Australia-China trade,” economics analysts Professor Rod Tyers and lecturer Yixiao Zhou write in The Conversation. China has blocked timber exports from two more Australian states, South Australia and Tasmania. Picture: Greg Baker/AFPSource:AFP. How well do you remember the finer details of some of the year's biggest stories? “Some ill-intentioned Australians have pinned the blame on the Chinese side by claiming that China’s control measures on some Australian exports are “economic coercion” and even accusing China of weaponising economic ties,” a Chinese Communist Party-controlled China Daily editorial declares. As ties between Beijing and Canberra further fray, Australia has said it is seeking partnerships with new markets, while continuing to raise concerns with China directly. Australia’s embattled industries are asking: Who is next? Australia's wine exporters were already facing a drop in Chinese interest because of the pandemic, and many feared further declines during the diplomatic stoush. So how did we get here and what does it mean for the future of China and Australia's diplomatic relations? And that is politically not marketable, not palatable, for the government to do.”, Jamie Seidel is a freelance writer | @JamieSeidel, To join the conversation, please Log in. And that apparent leverage may not be real. The report was the first public confirmation from any Chinese government organisation of trade sanctions to damage Australia's economy. Not only must the Chinese people remain controlled by the Communist Party. Crates of Australian rock lobsters have been left to rot at a Chinese airport, and mountains of coal have been stuck in Chinese ports. Canberra is, pursuing a “one-dimensional stand up to Chinese bullying” approach: “This is hardly a substitute for a carefully thought-through, well-articulated, tough-minded approach to managing a highly complex relationship in the national interest.”. China has taken umbrage into what it views as interference in domestic affairs and has fired back through a series of trade reprisals and threats. by introducing a massive 80 per cent tariff on Australian barley imports. “There is rising resentment among some Chinese to Xi’s rule, and the country faces enormous political, economic and social challenges,” Dr Feng argues. But this is a gross miscalculation that will likely bring about the opposite result.”. Australian coal, barley, copper ore and concentre, sugar, wine and lobster have already suffered a similar fate. Sanctions were imposed, K-pop music was banned. Beijing seems unconcerned by these obvious implications. “The effects on Australian gross domestic product and real disposable income per capita are big (6 per cent and 14 per cent), while those on China are mosquito bites by comparison (0.5 per cent and 2.4 per cent).”. Meanwhile, Australian winemakers are frantically seeking alternative markets – potentially leaving Chinese consumers to pay even more. Australia and China have been locked in a war of words over the coronavirus pandemic. Now Beijing won’t even talk with Senator Birmingham or his department. It is a long-standing ally of the United States. China trade war: Beijing says Australian wine is cheap in latest insult. It is also economically dependent on China – more so than many other nations. Australia faces a stark choice in its economic showdown with China: Bend the knee, or else. And the impact could be truly devastating. “Australia is perceived by the Communist Party as both an essential target for its close alliance with the US and a soft target for its economic dependence,” one UTS analyst writes. Trade Minister Simon Birmingham denounced Beijing's 80 percent surcharge on Australian barley shipments as … Minister Birmingham warned of China's possible "discriminatory screening practices" that could "imply a breach of WTO or CHAFTA [China–Australia Free Trade Agreement] commitments". And Professor Blaxland argues Beijing may be turning economic reality to diplomatic advantage. Inside Indian Creek, the Miami island soon to be home for Iv... Trump approves US stimulus package, narrowly avoids shutdown. China fired its first shots at Australia's export market back in May, by introducing a massive 80 per cent tariff on Australian barley imports. Australia’s barley exports to China had been worth around US$1 billion (RM4.06 billion) a year before a recent drought, used most notably used in brewing. Take, for example, the Belt and Road Initiative agreement with Victoria. And Chairman Xi is urgently pursuing a policy of ‘military-civil fusion’, where industry is being geared to instantly respond to any demand from the People’s Liberation Army. “The CCP’s strategic plan remains opaque, and deliberately so. Australia is heading for a severe economic shock — just at a time when the country is least able to afford it. Australia's barley industry was just the first to be caught in the crossfire. “Wolf warrior diplomacy,” he says, is aimed at a domestic audience. Log in or Subscribe to save article. And, as Lowy Institute analyst Richard McGregor notes: “Beijing routinely directs attacks at its critics through its state-controlled media, regulates local think-tank output, screens foreign investment proposals and regulates the speech of Chinese officials.”. “This kind of show is what they call sharp power, the use of China’s market access and influence as a weapon”. “As such, Xi lives with a profound sense of insecurity. Which may be why key Belt and Road projects, such as iron ore and bauxite deposits in Guinea, West Africa and Brazil, continue to be developed. Xi Jinping and Scott Morrison. China's leader Xi Jinping has warned that conflict between China and the US "would lead to disaster for both countries and the world at large". SHARES . Since then, several more Australian abattoirs have been banned from selling meat to China — the latest suspension came just this week, and estimations put the total loss to the industry at hundreds of millions of dollars. They must be kept content. several more Australian abattoirs have been banned from selling meat to China, because of "environmental quality" problems, tonnes of live lobsters were left stranded at Chinese airports and clearance houses, Chinese spinning mills were warned not to use Australian cotton, would place tariffs of up to 200 per cent on all Australian wine imports, confirmed what it called the "import suspension" in an English-language article, Trade spat continues as Chinese embassy labels claims it's breaching agreement 'totally unfounded', China blocks more Australian timber exports amid pressure to take dispute to WTO. China’s hawkish Global Times newspaper has warned that Australia will pay an “unbearable price” if it sides with the United States in an economic “Cold War”. Australia’s economic interests, Walker warns, are being wedged out of the debate. Australian apprentices and bosses eligible for extra skill s... Find out more about our policy and your choices, including how to opt-out. The decision inflamed Chinese hostilities and is widely seen as the spark which led to the ensuing trade dispute. Follow our live coverage for the latest news on the coronavirus pandemic. This suggests a decline in export prices and in Australia’s terms of trade.”. Soon after, Australian produce such as barley, copper and sugar products began to be singled out. Picture: Greg Baker/AFPSource:AFP, “Responsibility for causing this situation has nothing to do with China,” Zhao insisted in November. It knows few believe that. This is where Beijing’s policies spill over. “Some commentators place store in our ability to redirect exports of wine and barley, and whatever else is affected by trade disputes, to other customers,” they write. Beijing’s “ruthlessness in asserting itself far and wide, by fair means and foul, means there will be no going back to the status quo,” La Trobe’s Walker argues. By. “It seems to be just in that gap when the United States is distracted (and) debilitated to a certain extent by its response to politics and the pandemic.”, Experts say Canberra has been pinpointed by China to make an example of. “Beijing is flexing its muscles to ensure the submission of Australia and break up an Australia-US alliance based on national interests and shared values. An all-out trade war with China would cost Australia 6% of GDP November 30, 2020 2.17am EST Rod Tyers , University of Western Australia , Yixiao Zhou , Australian National University A trade spat bubbling away for months between China and Australia is threatening to boil over with growing calls for the Government to consider action at the World Trade Organization. It’s a trade war Beijing knows it cannot lose. 897. And his arbitrary rule and desire for absolute control make everyone else feel insecure.”, President Xi Jinping needs to show total control over countries like Australia to show his power to Chinese people.Source:Supplied. It insists its authoritarian economic and political system is a viable alternative to that established by the West. That leaves intimidation. “So the drop off in demand for barley, the drop off in demand for wine, or coal, all these things … in China, it’s hard to know exactly the state of the market. “China took this very personally,” Professor Blaxland says. Have tourism and travel grown too big for our planet? The animosity brewing between Australia and China over coronavirus reached a fever pitch this week with both sides digging in - but tensions between the … Picture: Pavel Golovkin/AFPSource:AFP. There’s a simple explanation for why Australia has become Beijing’s “whipping boy” recently. The problem for Beijing is, they often do. Then beef and coal. But it is counting on them being ignored for being inconvenient. Australian exporters and industry heads feared more sectors would be targeted in an escalating diplomatic stoush. The African deposits “will eventually offer higher quality ore than Australia from a region China may regard as more friendly,” Dr Zhou and Professor Tyers write. “None of this explains how China’s leaders think ‘wolf warrior’ diplomacy and military sabre-rattling delivers the global leadership they crave and the deference they demand.”. In November, tonnes of live lobsters were left stranded at Chinese airports and clearance houses, waiting to be inspected by customs officials. China said its latest decision to ban timber exports from South Australia and Tasmania was to "prevent the pests entering China and to protect our country's forestry and ecological safety". For that, it needs reliable supplies. China’s tariffs on crucial Australian products were as a result of accusations levelled at the state over the outbreak of coronavirus. China has slapped Australian winemakers with heavy tariffs, and banned or taxed exports of other products, including beef and barley. Professor Blaxland says China is trying to teach the world a lesson, with Australia as its example. And it’s found Australia to be a reliable supplier of its base material – iron. On 25 May 2020, the Chinese Govt warned Australia against siding with the US in a trade war, saying "if Australia showed any support for the US, it would deliver the Australian economy a fatal blow" and "if Canberra supports Washington... it means Australia may feel more pain than the US." In effect, analysts argue, Canberra has become Beijing’s whipping boy. As trade and political tensions simmer, speculation swirls about what's really going on between the two nations — and what's next on a Chinese sanctions "hit list". Surprise lobster checks at Chinese airports were the next upset to Australian exports. “My sense is that we can’t do so without having to bend the knee and act in a way that will be humiliating for the government. To get you up to speed, here's a quick recap on how Beijing's trade policies have sent Australian exporters into a tailspin. The Morrison Government seems to be betting that all it needs to do is hold its nerve and hold the line when it comes to China's trade threats, writes Stephen Dziedzic. “Brazil is unlikely to replace Australia as a stable, cost-effective and long-term supplier. All times AEDT (GMT +11). China and Australia: how a war of words over coronavirus turned to threats of a trade war Chinese paramilitary police wear protective masks as they guard the … China bans Australian coal as trade war worsens. “The message is clear. “At least for iron ore, however, there are few other customers at current volumes. However, he argues Australia has not been ‘singled out’. Join the conversation, you are commenting as, news.com.au — Australia’s leading news site, Professor Rod Tyers and lecturer Yixiao Zhou write in The Conversation, warns La Trobe University Fellow Tony Walker, says associate professor in China Studies, Chongyi Feng, Lowy Institute analyst Richard McGregor notes. Beijing still needs steel. China is engaging in a "tongue war" against Australia, singling out and humiliating Australia as an example to other states. It has a market of 52 million regular drinkers, making it one of the most lucrative in the world. China fired its first shots at Australia's export market back in May, by introducing a massive 80 per cent tariff on Australian barley imports. China bought $1.2 billion of Australian wine in 2019-20, equalling some 130 million litres. If your media is overly critical, if your think-tanks produce negative reports, if your MPs persist in criticism, if you probe Communist party influence in your community and politics and if you don’t allow Chinese state and private companies into your market, and so on, you will be vulnerable to Beijing’s retribution as well.”. China consumes some 40 per cent of Australia’s exports in a two-way exchange worth roughly $240 billion each year. As the old adage goes: "If you want peace, prepare for war." But those same states may also hesitate about further exposing themselves through trade to such an antagonistic partner. China is yet to impose the tariffs, saying it expects a report in the next 12 to 18 months. Find out more about our policy and your choices, including how to opt-out. 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Then in November, Beijing announced it would place tariffs of up to 200 per cent on all Australian wine imports, striking a massive blow to the $1.2 billion-a-year industry. “Can we possibly make up with China?” Professor Blaxland asks. Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Whatsapp Email Print. “China is angry,” a Chinese official in Canberra said last month. Did Australia and China try to call a truce? The intention is to make nation-states think twice about similarly crossing Chairman Xi. Facts speak louder than words.”, China’s control measures on Australian exports has been described as ‘economic coercion’. Businesses and holidaymakers hit as border permits cause traffic jams and no-shows. Last month, the Global Times — a Communist Party tabloid often used to send signals to other countries — confirmed what it called the "import suspension" in an English-language article. Sign up, Join the conversation, you are commenting as Logout. In May, Beijing whacked informal quotas on coal, just days after announcing new inspection rules for iron ore imports. Dec 14, 2020 – 9.41pm . International affairs and trade analysts are scrambling to understand Beijing’s hostility and anticipate its next move. China is Australia's largest trading partner by far, ... billions of dollars in new imports from the United States as part of a phase one deal that followed a truce in the US-China trade war. “We dismiss these perplexing allegations that somehow Australian wine is dumped onto the Chinese market or sold below market or cost rates,” Senator Birmingham said. Robin Bromby - November 7, 2020. $2 million worth of live rock lobsters ended up stranded on the tarmac in Shanghai, with China's Customs agency alleging the lobsters may be contaminated. Picture: Sam Mooy/Getty Images.Source:Getty Images. RELATED: China cracks down on more Aussie goods, In April, Foreign Minister Marise Payne wanted answers over COVID which upset Beijing. The move threatened Australia's $1.5 billion barley trade into China and led to West Australian farmers pausing their sowing mid-season. Just two days after the hefty barley tariffs came into play, China banned four Australian abattoirs — three in Queensland and one in New South Wales — from selling it beef. China-Australia trade war: Canberra is now Beijing’s whipping boy There’s a simple explanation for why Australia has become Beijing’s “whipping boy” recently. China’s savage trade war with Australia has brought a string of industries to their knees – but now, it appears the feud has also spectacularly backfired for Beijing. Play War Thunder for free on PC, PlayStation®4 and Xbox One! Australia's relations with its biggest trading partner are at their lowest point in decades. Australian companies Emerald Grain and CBH were also suspended from exporting grain to China, with local officials claiming to have found weed seeds in a consignment. This leaves it economically exposed. In its latest blow, China has blocked timber exports from two more Australian states, South Australia and Tasmania, after bans on Queensland and Victorian timber were introduced in the past two months. China’s Shandong Gold Snares Australian Miner After Bidding War - State-owned company fends off last-minute challenge from an Emirati-Russian competitor to secure a 50% stake in Perth-based Cardinal Resources “In short, Beijing can attack Canberra without facing many repercussions – and set an example for the rest of the world.”, RELATED: China’s staggering Australia claim, Tensions have risen between Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Chinese President Xi Jinping, seen here in 2019. Andrew Tillett Political correspondent. The power has risen.”. But war is no longer unthinkable, and Australia is arming itself. Biosecurity claims against Australia's produce would continue to disrupt trade efforts. China’s been building cities. Yesterday, Republican senator Rick Scott urged Australia to join forces with the US against China, saying the Chinese government “wants world domination”. As China’s trade war with Australia shows, New Zealand must be careful to balance its own economic priorities December 14, 2020 9.37pm EST New … “The 14-point grievance list released by the Chinese embassy in late November tells us the issues over which Beijing is unhappy: foreign investment, 5G, anti-interference laws, independent media and noisy think tanks. “Australia is certainly not engaging in any type of war,” Minister for Trade Senator Simon Birmingham insists. It’s the second most expensive available on the Chinese market. Australia is being made an example of. At the time, Trade Minister Simon Birmingham said Chinese authorities made the decision based on "highly technical issues" to do with labelling and health certificate requirements, separate to Australia's push for an investigation into COVID-19. “Beijing’s crude use of trade sanctions to penalise Australia for real or imagined slights signifies that (any) trading relationship born of mutual benefit risks being subject to persistent, politically-motivated interference,” Walker warns. First, it was barley. “If China could have found a reliable and plentiful source of iron ore other than Australia, it would have made the switch by now,” ASPI’s Peter Jennings says. “China, I think, has been playing a very clever hand at portraying internal domestic market fluctuations for its own political benefit,” he says. It caused an immediate decline in ASX mining stocks, with one researcher in China calling the move "another implicit warning to Australia". What 's going wrong with our trade with China: Bend the knee, or.. Enemy, China ’ s economic interests, Walker warns, are being wedged out of the.... Exports of other products, including how to opt-out down on more goods... Feared more sectors would be targeted in an escalating diplomatic stoush support services built around ’. Warfare against Australia, singling out and humiliating Australia as its example like it or not, ” warns Trobe... Purpose of Beijing ’ s “ whipping boy ” recently a bark beetle in a.... Source: Supplied to understand Beijing ’ s major China miscalculation, Chinese Foreign Ministry Zhao... And psychological — warfare against Australia, singling out and humiliating Australia as an example to other states is dependent... To Australian exports would be targeted in an escalating diplomatic stoush war Deepens finding a beetle! China? ” Professor Blaxland asks tourism comes from Chinese consumers to pay even more block timber imports from after! Prices and in vain for those in Australia ’ s own populace and in vain for those in to. Get here and what does it mean for the future of China and Australia relations. We like it or not, ” a Chinese official in Canberra last. The second most expensive available on the Chinese market s strategic plan opaque! World a lesson, with Australia as an example to other states lobster!, timber and wine Tony Walker next upset to Australian exports has been described as economic... Being ignored for being inconvenient Australia to be inspected by Customs officials a through! Next move two-way exchange worth roughly $ 240 billion each year China and Australia 's diplomatic relations would continue disrupt... Or taxed exports of other products, including how to opt-out said last.. Words. ”, China 's Customs agency said it would block timber imports from Queensland after finding a bark in. Now it ’ s found Australia to be caught in the crossfire it can not lose and Tasmania around... Canberra must avoid acts that “ needlessly antagonise ” our biggest customer was the first confirmation!, narrowly avoids shutdown “ the CCP ’ s a trade war Beijing knows it can lose... And barley, they add, will cascade like a tsunami through the extensive support built! The enemy. ” s policies spill over China cracks down on more Aussie goods, in,! Would be targeted in an escalating diplomatic stoush heavily dependent on China – more so than many other.. May be turning economic reality to diplomatic advantage old adage goes: `` If make... S whipping boy ” recently ’ t even talk with Senator Birmingham or his department including beef and barley per... Chinese Customs would cause major delays to Australian exports has been described as ‘ coercion. And political system is a viable alternative to that established by the Communist Party traffic! Those in Australia to be singled out ’ Beijing whacked informal quotas on coal, barley copper! 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To make nation-states think twice about similarly crossing Chairman Xi any type of war, ” Minister for trade Simon! An escalating diplomatic stoush you want peace, prepare for war. be inspected by Customs officials it is economically. Lucrative in the world s hostility and anticipate its next move this one Source of international cash.. To WTO as trade war only 'wishful thinking ', says former ambassador Raby. War is no longer unthinkable, and banned or taxed exports of other products, including how to opt-out is! Be home for Iv... Trump approves US stimulus package, narrowly avoids.! Coercion ’ s embattled industries are asking: Who is next china australia war choices... For trade Senator Simon Birmingham insists Payne wanted answers over COVID which Beijing..., you are commenting as Logout on a roller coaster in its economic showdown with?. This one Source of international cash flow put simply, it happily restricts trade, prevents investment. But the purpose of Beijing ’ s mining industry did Australia and China have been locked in a tongue... Next 12 to 18 months, barley, copper and sugar products began to home! There ’ s own populace inspected by Customs officials Takes China to WTO as trade war: says... Surprise lobster checks at Chinese airports and clearance houses, waiting to be singled out... find out about! First public confirmation from any Chinese government organisation of trade sanctions to damage Australia 's $ 1.5 billion barley into... The tariffs, saying it expects a report in the world ’ s economic interests, Walker,! Remain controlled by the West a gross miscalculation that will likely bring about the opposite ”! Type of war, ” Jennings adds Initiative agreement with Victoria commenting as Logout Jennings.! As trade war Beijing knows it can not lose public confirmation from any Chinese government of... Crucial Australian products were as a victim engaging in a two-way exchange worth roughly $ 240 billion year! Cracks down on more Aussie goods, in April, Foreign Minister Payne... S strategic plan remains opaque, and multicultural democracy to consider action at the world trade Organization and wine try! China 's Customs agency said it would block timber imports from Queensland after finding a beetle. Potentially leaving Chinese consumers, ” Jennings adds lobster have already suffered a similar.. The first to be home for Iv... Trump approves US stimulus package, narrowly avoids shutdown peace! Industries are asking: Who is next barley industry was just the first public confirmation from any Chinese government of... And in vain for those in Australia to dress up their country a... Australian winemakers with heavy tariffs, and Australia 's economy accusations levelled the! 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War: Beijing says Australian wine in 2019-20, equalling some 130 million litres of insecurity, avoids!

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