Australian wine exports to China saw a sharp fall in March, with it still too early to tell the full impact of the coronavirus crisis, stated Wine Australia CEO Andreas Clark in a press release from the group today.
“We saw Australian export value in the month of March 2020 to China was 43 per cent lower than March 2019 and 14 per cent lower than the same quarter in 2019,” said Clark. Australia’s wine exports to the world were down 7 percent in the first quarter.
Despite this, Australia has solidified its position as the leader by value in China, with the release citing stats that showed the nation at US$814 million to France’s US$584 million for the year ending February 2020, followed by Chile at US$255 million, Spain at US$129 million and Italy at US$$128 million.
Australia also just finished a half-step behind France on volume, at 117 million liters versus 127 million liters. Chile had 68 million, Spain had 50 million and Italy had 29 million. That blend of high volume and even higher value meant Australia was far and away the leader in terms of declared amount per liter, at just under US$7.
And the tough start to the year was not enough to negate all of the gains fro the past 12 months, stated the report.
“Australian wine exports to China (including Hong Kong and Macau) increased by 13 per cent in value to $1.25 billion and decreased 11 per cent in volume to 137 million litres… in the year ended March 2020. The average value of exports increased by 27 per cent to $9.11 per litre FOB, a record level,” it said. “Exports to mainland China increased by 15 per cent in value to $1.15 billion and decreased by 11 per cent in volume to 130 million litres… Average value increased by 30 per cent to $8.86 per litre FOB.”
While mainland China ranked third for Australian wine by volume the past 12 months, totaling 130 million liters versus 219 million for the UK and 136 million for the US, it was the runaway leader for value at US$ 1.15 billion versus US$416 million for the US and US$347 million for the UK. In short, China imports pricey wine, the UK importers cheap stuff, and the US falls somewhere in the middle.
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