Australia-Canada wine dispute settlement proves value of the WTO

Image: AGW chief executive Tony battaglene.

Australian Grape & Wine (AGW) welcomes the Ministerial announcement that the Australian and Canadian Governments have settled the remaining measures in Australia’s World Trade Organisation (WTO) challenge to Canadian wine measures.

The announcement was made by the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the Hon Dan Tehan MP and the Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, the Hon David Littleproud MP.

Under the finalised settlement, Canada has agreed to phase out the outstanding trade issues raised at the WTO for the discriminatory measures imposed by the province of Quebec.

AGW chief executive Tony Battaglene said, “This is the last piece of the puzzle for Australia’s WTO challenge of Canadian trading practices, resolving a range of discriminatory trading practices across British Columbia, Québec, Ontario and Nova Scotia”.

“The Canadian wine export market is extremely important for Australian wine and it is vital that we work to harmonise trade as much as possible. The market is Australia’s fourth largest wine export market, valued at more than $190 million in 2020, and it’s certainly a market in which we are pursuing further growth,” he said.

‘’But we need to be able to compete on a level playing field, and this is why it’s so important to have an independent umpire in the WTO. In this case, the rules-based system provided the opportunity for bilateral dialogue and led to a result which was fair to both Australian producers and their colleagues in Canada.

“We would like to acknowledge the great work of the Australian Government, and in particular the team at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, who have worked tirelessly to resolve this issue.”


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