UK FTA announcement a major step in the right direction for Australia’s wine sector and British consumers

Australian Grape & Wine welcomes today’s announcement that Australia and the United Kingdom have reached an in-principle agreement on a bilateral Free Trade Agreement [FTA]. This announcement is a key milestone on the path towards a truly liberalising agreement that will see more wine lovers in the UK enjoying Australia’s finest drops.

“The United Kingdom is an incredibly important market for Australia’s grape and wine businesses, and British consumers are some of the most enthusiastic Australian wine aficionados,” said Tony Battaglene, Chief Executive of Australian Grape & Wine.

“The value of Australia’s wine exports to the UK grew by 33 per cent to $461 million in the year to 31 March 2021, representing more than 17 per cent of the total value of our exports over this period, and there is plenty of room to grow in the coming years.”

The agreement is positive news for Australian grape growers and winemakers looking to diversify their export footprint and expand in the years ahead.

“What we’ve seen today is a commitment by the Australian and UK Governments to finalise a trade agreement that will drive benefits to the economies of both countries and make exporting our world class wines to the UK easier for Australian wine businesses.”

“Today’s deal means British consumers will be provided with an even greater choice of Australian wines when they visit their local supermarket or off-licence, or enjoy a meal at a pub or restaurant in the months and years ahead.”

“We’re hoping the final text of the agreement will address a range of costs and barriers Australian wine exporters currently face in the UK. We know there is more work to do on the detail, but the elimination of tariffs is critical for our sector. Other areas we are hoping to see progress on, include simpler certification requirements, and improvements in our ability to further process and package Australian wines in the UK market, which will drive innovation, create jobs here and in the UK, and reduce our carbon footprint”.

“We congratulate the Prime Minister on today’s announcement, and thank Ministers Tehan and Littleproud for all the work they and their departments have done to reach this milestone,” said Mr Battaglene.

“We look forward to working closely with the Australian Government on the home stretch as they work through the final technical details of the agreement.”