CHINA - Following the 379 per cent year-on-year surge in beef imports during 2013, China has imported 258,175 tonnes for the year to October, up nine per cent year-on-year, according to analysts at Meat and Livestock Australia.
While imports from New Zealand and Uruguay increased, volumes received from Australia and Canada declined.
Imports of Australian and Canadian beef into China over the first ten months of 2014 declined three per cent and 28 per cent, respectively, accounting for 45 per cent and five per cent of the overall imported market.
Despite the decline, Australia remained the main official supplier.
The second largest official beef trading partner with China was Uruguay, with market share this year increasing to 30 per cent. While overall Uruguay beef exports were steady, increased volume sent to China was offset by reduced shipments to Chile, Europe and Russia.
The rise in imports from Uruguay into China this year has been mostly bone-in products.
New Zealand market share in China, despite an 11 per cent increase in volume, remained at 24 per cent for the January to October period. New Zealand beef exports were higher over the first ten months of 2014, with strong demand from China and the US attracted product away from Japan and developing South East Asia.
The majority of China beef imports from New Zealand were boneless beef.
The Australian beef export outlook to China remains positive, especially for the medium to long-term with the recent signing of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, which, once rectified, will eliminate all tariffs imposed by China on Australian red meat products over four to nine years.
TheMeatSite News Desk