Regulatory information for exporting wine to China, including the regulatory environment, duties and taxes, and wine standards.
China has signed Free Trade Agreements (FTA) with Chile and New Zealand which has resulted in the significant reduction of import duties for products originating in these countries. In April 2005, Australia and China agreed to commence negotiations on a FTA. The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) was signed on 17 June 2015 and came into effect December 20, 2015. Upon entry into force, ChAFTA will deliver substantial benefits for the Australian economy, building on this highly complementary relationship.
Local awareness of Australian premium wine has improved due to increasing bilateral business between China and Australia. Promotion and education of Australian wine products from the Australian wine industry will certainly help expand the market and increase market share. The Chinese demand for premium wine is evident with strong growth in the higher price segments. There is a move towards Westernisation and a strong appeal towards foreign products which, in conjunction with wine education, should result in the development of a wine appreciation culture in China. This transition is likely to take some time however.
This guide provides helpful tips for Australian wine companies looking to secure IP and brand protection in China.
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In March 2018, the National People’s Congress approved a sweeping government restructuring plan. China has established a new super regulator – the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR), which has merged and undertaken the responsibilities previously held by numerous agencies including the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ), State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC), Standardisation Administration of China (SAC) and the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA). The SAMR has a broad mandate, overseeing everything from drug safety supervision, quality inspection, fair competition and commercial bribery, issuance of business registrations, certifications and accreditations, management of intellectual property rights and comprehensive supervision and management of the market order.
The Certification and Accreditation Administration (CNCA) previously under AQSIQ has been merged in to SAMR, while the entry and exit inspection and quarantine function of the state CIQs have been absorbed into a new customs agency called the General Administration of Customs China (GACC).
There remains much food law reform in the pipeline. The Implementing Regulations of the Food Safety Law took effect on 1 December 2019. Updates will be provided as they become available.
The legal framework for food safety in China is governed principally by the Food Safety Law 2015 and the Import and Export Commodity Inspection Law 2018. China recently issued draft Measures on Supervision and Management of Food Labelling as well as a revised draft GB7718-20xx Labelling of Pre-packaged Foods. This update incorporates the proposed measures, noting that both standards are in draft format only and there has been no proposed date of entry into force.
The regulatory framework for wine is established under the following national standards:
- GB2760-2014 – National Food Safety Standard for Usage of Food Additives
- GB7718-2011 – National Food Safety Standard for the Labelling of Pre-Packaged Foods
- GB2758-2012 – National Food Safety Standard on Fermented Alcoholic Beverages
- GB15037-2006 – National Standard for Wines
- GB2762-2017 – Maximum Levels of Contaminants in Food
Exporters should also be aware of the Consumer Rights Protection Law which allows for compensation to consumers for purchases of noncompliant food products. This has given rise to ‘professional buyers’ who make claims of wrongdoing to seek financial compensation at the expense of traders and producers. Careful attention should be paid to labelling as labelling errors have reportedly been the highest cause of non-compliance complaints submitted by ‘professional buyers’. China has released draft Implementing Regulations for the Consumer Rights Protection Law which aims to limit the rise of the professional buyer.
Import procedures for the Chinese market
Duties and Taxes for the Chinese Market
Labelling Requirements for the Chinese market
Wine standards for the Chinese market