UK-Australia trade deal: What beef and lamb imports are included?

Australia will have significant opportunities to export beef and lamb products to the UK under the new trade deal agreed this week – which could have a significant impact on Irish beef and lamb exports to our nearest neighbours.

According to the Australian Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Dan Tehan in a statement yesterday (Tuesday, June 15), prime ministers Scott Morrison and Boris Johnson have agreed on the broad outlines of an Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement.

Under the deal, the Australian Department of International Trade notes that the UK will liberalise Australian imports with 99%of Australian goods, including Australian wine and short and medium grain milled rice, entering the UK duty free when the agreement enters into force, adding:

Beef tariffs will be eliminated after 10 years. During the transition period, Australia will have immediate access to a duty-free quota of 35,000t, rising in equal instalments to 110,000t in year 10.

“In the subsequent five years, a safeguard will apply on beef imports exceeding a further volume threshold rising in equal instalments to 170,000t, levying a tariff safeguard duty of 20% for the rest of the calendar year.

“Sheepmeat tariffs will be eliminated after 10 years.

During the transition period, Australia will have immediate access to a duty-free quota of 25,000t, rising in equal instalments to 75,000t in year 10.

“In the subsequent five years, a safeguard will apply on sheep meat imports exceeding a further volume threshold rising in equal instalments to 125,000t, levying a tariff safeguard duty of 20% for the rest of the calendar year.”

Sugar tariffs will be eliminated over eight years. During the transition period, Australia will have immediate access to a duty-free quota of 80,000t, rising by 20,000t each year.

Moving to dairy imports to the UK, the Australian department noted:

Dairy tariffs will be eliminated over five years. During the transition period, Australia will have immediate access to a duty-free quota for cheese of 24,000t, rising in equal instalments to 48,000t in year five.

“Australia will also have immediate access to a duty-free quota for non-cheese dairy of 20,000t,” it was concluded.