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17 December 2021

Western Australian Agrifood Export eNews

Agribusiness, commercial fishing and aquaculture news from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).  If you have any questions or information to share, please email export@dpird.wa.gov.auSubscribe to Western Australian Agrifood Export eNews.

Today’s newsletter is the last for this year. The first edition for 2022 will be out on Friday 21 January. We wish you a safe and festive holiday season and a happy New Year.

Photo:  iStock

Grants for developing your export markets

Are you a WA business looking to develop your export market opportunities?  If so, you could be eligible for a share of $2.7 million in funding from the Western Australian Government as part of the International Competitiveness Co-investment Fund (ICCF) Round Two.

Applications are now open for:

  • Aspiring, emerging and established exporters seeking to capture international export market opportunities, or
  • Businesses looking to develop or rebuild international market business relationships disrupted by COVID-19. 

Grants of between $20,000 to $100,000 are available, depending on your stage of exporting experience. A co-contribution of $1 for every $1 of grant funding is required. 

Please visit the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development's ICCF webpage to learn more and see if your business is eligible.  Source:  DPIRD  |  Related:  Helping WA agribusiness capture export markets  WA Minister for Agriculture and Food  |  Photo:  iStock

New export opportunities open for Peel and WA producers

Three Western Australian food and beverage producers are exporting to Singapore for the first time through a Western Australian Government-led initiative to explore new trade opportunities for local businesses.

The Agri-Innovation Precinct initiative, led by the State through the Peel Development Commission in partnership with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA, Shire of Murray and GrowHub, enables small businesses to trial export and market test their product in Singapore.

GrowHub, founded by Fund Singapore, facilitates the export and overseas marketing of the products in the trial and is a key strategic partner of the WA Food Innovation Precinct.

While the Precinct is currently under construction, GrowHub has moved ahead of the game by market testing WA products through its international connections.  More...  Source:  WA Minister for Regional Development; Agriculture and Food  |  Photo:  Peel Development Commission [Minister Alannah MacTiernan with producers who joined Wide Open Agriculture to trial product in Singapore.]

IFAM thanks businesses for their engagement

The team delivering the International Freight Assistance Mechanism (IFAM) has praised Australian businesses for their resilience and hard work in keeping international trade flowing in 2021.  With travel restrictions continuing to limit airfreight options this year, businesses across the nation needed to work harder than ever, including using IFAM to stay connected to overseas customers.

The IFAM team explained that retaining these relationships supports Australia’s reputation as a reliable trading partner, which will be more important than ever as we adjust to a tougher new trading environment in 2022 and beyond.

“On behalf of the entire IFAMily, I’d like to extend my thanks to industry for the way they’ve worked with us in reconnecting our global supply chains in 2021,” IFAM lead Air Vice-Marshal Margaret Staib said. 

IFAM is a temporary, targeted, emergency support measure put in place by the Australian Government to keep global air links open in response to the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pork and strawberries are just some of the high-value, time-sensitive perishable Western Australian products moved with the aid of IFAM in 2021.

The IFAM team acknowledged the importance of teamwork – between Commonwealth and State government departments, industry groups and businesses – to rebuild supply chains.  The team looks forward to continuing this collaboration in 2022.  Source and Photo:  IFAM

Australia-UK trade agreement signed

The Australia-United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement was signed today and is expected to come into force in 2022.

Further information about this new agreement can be found on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade websiteSource and Image:  DFAT

Buy sustainable seafood for Christmas

Australians are being encouraged by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and chefs to purchase wild-caught sustainable seafood for Christmas. 

According to new national research conducted by YouGov on behalf of the MSC, 67% of the respondents plan to enjoy prawns this Christmas.  Less than half of them (44%) say they plan to make a sustainable choice.  The study reveals that not knowing how to tell if it is wild-caught and sustainable, or what to look for were key reasons why half of the Aussie seafood lovers surveyed still believe it is difficult to purchase wild-caught sustainable seafood.

This year, according to the research, 39% of respondents said they are more likely to buy wild-caught sustainable lobster this Christmas than in previous years.  And with western rock lobster exports from WA down 23% in 2020-21 compared to 2019-20 (and down 48% from 2018-19) due to COVID-19 and trade disruptions, there should be increased availability locally.

“Aussies have much to be proud about as they choose to savour WA's western rock lobster, which comes from the very first MSC certified fishery in the world,” says the MSC.

The MSC blue label tick is applied to wild-caught seafood from fisheries that have been independently certified to the MSC Fisheries Standard.  Eleven WA fisheries have achieved MSC certification.  Source:  MSC / DPIRD  |  Related:  MSC urges Aussies to purchase sustainable seafood  Source:  Retail World  |  Photo:  MSC

Opportunities for Aussie exporters in South China

Austrade’s latest China Insights video looks at new opportunities in South China, a region which includes Guangdong, Hunan, Guangxi, Fujian and Hainan.  With a combined market of over 300 million consumers, it has a total gross domestic product (GDP) equivalent to countries like Canada or South Korea.

As the gateway for many Australian food and beverage products into mainland China, South China has played a significant role in amplifying the Australian brand.  

Guangdong province alone represented 22% of China's total imports and exports in 2020.  The region continues to present commercial opportunities for Australian business across various industries, including agribusiness and food.

If you want to know more about doing business in South China, please contact Austrade.  More...  Source:  Austrade  |  Photo:  Irina Iriser / Unsplash [Guangzhou, Guangdong, China]

WTO: Slow rollback of COVID-19 related trade restrictions

World Trade Organisation (WTO) members showed restraint in the imposition of new trade-restrictive measures related to COVID-19 and continued to roll back restrictions adopted earlier in the pandemic, according to the WTO Director-General’s annual overview report on trade-related developments.

Despite a slowdown in new trade restrictions unrelated to the pandemic, the stockpile of unrepealed restrictive measures that has accumulated since the WTO's monitoring exercise started in 2009 now affects traded merchandise worth an estimated US$1.5 trillion, or nearly 9% of world imports.

The report notes that since the outbreak of the pandemic, 399 COVID-19 trade and trade-related measures in goods have been implemented by WTO members and observers.  Of these, 66% were of a trade-facilitating nature and 34% could be considered trade restrictive.  Export restrictions accounted for 85% of all restrictive measures recorded – 117 measures in total – of which 59% had been repealed by mid-October 2021.  More...  Source:  WTO  |  Photo:  William William / Unsplash