China is Australia's largest agriculture, forestry and fisheries export market, worth around $10 billion in 2015-16, up from $5 billion in 2010-11.
The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), which entered into force on 20 December 2015, delivers to Australia significantly improved market access for agriculture and processed foods, providing Australian companies with access to China better than any of China's other major trading partners.
Key outcomes include:
- Beef : tariffs (currently ranging from 12-25 per cent) are being eliminated by 1 January 2024
- Dairy : all tariffs on Australian dairy products (up to 20 per cent) are being eliminated between 1 January 2019 and 1 January 2026 – this includes rapid elimination of the 15 per cent tariff on infant formula and the 10-19 per cent tariff on ice cream, lactose and casein, both by 1 January 2019
- Sheep and goat meat : tariffs on all sheep and goat meat (ranging from 12-23 per cent) are being eliminated by 1 January 2023
- Pork: all pork tariffs (up to 20 per cent) are being eliminated by 1 January 2019
- Hides and Skins : tariffs of 5 to 14 per cent on hides and skins including, sheepskin, cowhide and kangaroo hides and skins, are being eliminated between 1 January 2017 and 1 January 2022
- Wine and Spirits : tariffs of 14 and 20 per cent on wine, and tariffs of up to 65 per cent on alcoholic beverages and spirits, are being eliminated by 1 January 2019
- Horticulture : tariffs on all fruit, vegetables and nuts, ranging up to 30 per cent, are being eliminated, most by 1 January 2019
- Barley and Sorghum : the 3 per cent tariff on barley and 2 per cent tariff on sorghum was eliminated immediately on 20 December 2015
- Seafood : tariffs on all seafood exports are being eliminated by 1 January 2019 – this includes progressive elimination of the 14 and 15 per cent tariffs on fresh abalone and rock lobster, respectively, by 1 January 2019
- Processed foods : tariffs are being eliminated across a range of processed foods, including fruit juices and honey
- Wool: Australia has received an Australia-only duty-free quota of 30,000 tonnes clean wool, which will grow by 5 per cent each year to 44,324 tonnes (clean) through to 2024 – this is offered in addition to the 287,000 tonne existing WTO wool quota already extensively accessed by Australia (which imposes a tariff of 1 per cent).
More detail on the agriculture and processed food outcomes can be found in the detailed fact sheet on Agriculture and processed foods, or in the full text of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement.