AU Wool Industry Lobbies for FTA
October 14, 2005
October 14, 2005 -- Australia's wool industry has begun lobbying their government to ensure it is part of any free trade agreement (FTA) with China.
Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) released on Monday a report into possible economic benefits of the complete liberalization of the wool trade predicting a 20-percent increase in wool exports to China within 10 years.
That is worth more than $US600 million to local producers.
The chairman of AWI's China Free Trade Committee, Brian Van Rooyen, says import restrictions currently hinder sales to what is already Australia's biggest wool customer.
"Once the quota level is hit and the 30 percent duties applied, it puts a cost impost onto product over there that is clearly unsustainable and makes the garments or the apparel that's produced form Australian wool, under those tariffs uncompetitive with other fibers," he said.
"Bear in mind that China produces it's own polyester and acrylic fiber and to put a 38-percent duty of wool just removes the competitive element."
Reprinted from ABC Australia