BEIJING, CHINA — China is expected to soon impose a ban on Australian wheat imports, according to the South China Morning Post, as tensions between Australia and its largest trading partner continue to grow.
China has already banned barley and a host of other products from Australia which earlier this year called for investigation into the origins of the COVID-19 virus, which became a global pandemic after spreading from China. Tensions are also centered on Australia’s claim of a growing Chinese influence on its domestic affairs, which China has denied.
If the ban occurs, it would put at risk an estimated $394 million in annual wheat exports to China.
Chinese authorities announced last week that they would suspend further imports of products from Emerald Grain and timber from Queensland. They said the decision was made after inspectors found unacceptable levels of contaminants and discovered pests in some cargoes. The decision was preceded by similar trade restrictions on beef, and anti-dumping duties on Australian barley and cheap Australian wine.