May 19, 2020 08:14 PM

China Levies Over 80% Tariffs on Australian Barley

What’s new: China’s Commerce Ministry levied tariffs of more than 80% on imports of barley from Australia late Monday as tensions escalated between the two nations.

The ministry said the duties were the result of an 18-month anti-dumping investigation which ruled subsidies on Australia’s barley industry had harmed China’s domestic industry.

Australian Trade Minister Simon Birmingham challenged China’s judgement saying it had “errors both in law and fact,” and said the Australian government was exploring appeal options to remove the “unfair duties.”

China’s foreign ministry has denied its investigation of Australian barley producers was politically motivated.

The background: Relations between Australia and China hit a low point this month, with China suspending meat imports from four Australian abattoirs that make up 35% of Australian beef exports to the country.

At the time, a spokesman for China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs denied the import freeze was linked to recent frictions between Australia and China related to the coronavirus pandemic. He said the companies in question had violated inspection and quarantine requirements.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use.

Related: China Suspends Imports From Four Australian Slaughterhouses

Contact reporter Flynn Murphy (

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