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PBEC Trade Report October 2023

AUSTRALIAN FARMERS CALL FOR REVERSAL OF BAN: Australian farming groups have written to Prime Minister Albanese urging the Government to reverse its ending of live sheep exports by sea. They warned of irreversible harm to the farm sector and to Australia’s trade and diplomatic relations in the Middle East.

JAPAN & EU LIST MORE PROTECTED PRODUCT NAMES: Japan and the European Union have agreed under their Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement to protect a further 42 Geographical Indication names. The latest addition includes Japanese and EU products and adds to an existing list of 375 different products.

AUSTRALIA TO RESUME HAY SHIPMENTS TO CHINA: China has reportedly lifted restrictions on hay exports from Australia. The shipments halved in recent years as exporters struggled to renew permits. Trade Minister Farrell said the Government would persevere and press for all trade impediments to be removed.

INDIA EXTENDS REFUND SCHEME: India has extended its program that refunds duties and taxes on exported products to June 2024. The RoDTEP Program was first introduced in 2021 as a mechanism to refund taxes and duties that were incurred during the manufacture and distribution of exported products.

ASEAN ECONOMIES TO BEGIN CUSTOMS PILOT: Six economies – Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand – will soon begin a six-month pilot program to streamline trade by implementing a mutual recognition arrangement of their Authorised Economic Operator Programs.

AUSTRALIA & FRANCE SIGN MINERALS AGREEMENT: Australia and France have agreed to complete a critical minerals study by year end. The agreement, signed in Paris by Resources Minister King, will see the two economies cooperate on a joint study of supply chains and the specific needs of both countries.

PHILIPPINES TO PROMOTE USE OF FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS: The Department of Trade and Industry has signed an MoU with the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry to jointly promote the utilization of trade agreements. A key initiative under the MoU will be the establishment of trade assistance centres.

MALAYSIA IMPOSES STEEL DUTIES ON JAPAN: Malaysia has introduced anti-dumping duties of up to 22.62% on a range of cold-rolled steel products imported from Japan for automotive, electric and electronic end uses. The duties are to apply for five years and follow a complaint by domestic steel producers.

TAIWAN CALLS FOR AUSTRALIAN FTA SUPPORT: President Tsai Ing-wen has urged Australia to support Taiwan’s bid to join the mega CPTPP Free Trade Agreement. She made the request in Taipei during the week when meeting with a cross-party group of visiting Australian Parliamentarians.

AUSTRALIA EXTENDS RUSSIAN TARIFFS: Australia has extended its punitive tariffs on goods from Russia and Belarus until October 2025. The additional 35% tariffs are part of a targeted program to reduce Russia’s ability to fund its war in Ukraine. Imports from Russia fell by more than 95% in the second half of 2022.

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