It seems that the Australian and Chinese trade conflict has escalated to a whole new level. Instead of waging war with words, two countries have decided to take action against each other. After China increased tariffs on certain Australian goods, Aussies have started considering boycotting Chinese goods.
Paula Hanson, a leader of One Nation, has stated that Australia needs to fight back by boycotting Chinese goods. Although she has a lot of support in this, many other Australians don’t agree that this is a smart decision for Australia.
First of all, China is Australia’s most important trade partner when it comes to imports. Around 18 percent of Australia’s total imports come from China through deals that are worth $71.3 billion.
Another thing is, Australia imports some extremely important resources from China. Most things that Aussies have, from telecom equipment and parts to furniture and computers, come from China.
It is estimated that if Australia boycotts Chinese goods, it will cost it 6 percent of GDP.
Queensland University of Technology retail expert Gary Mortimer is one of those speakers who believe that boycotting China won’t work. He added:
“Calling for boycotts of Chinese-made products may seem like a reasonable and balanced approach. In practical terms it is incredibly difficult. One would only need to wander through any Australian discount department store to realize the proportion of products imported from China. Even products produced in places like South Korea, India and Bangladesh may contain elements or parts produced in China.”
Australia-China Business Council national president David Olsson believes that Australia needs to handle this whole situation with care. He said:
“Australian business – not to mention the broader Australian community – cannot afford the thinly disguised hostility that currently surrounds the wine tariff dispute to become the new normal in Australia-China relations. The Australia China Business Council’s position has been consistent. Australia cannot bend the knee in response to Beijing’s pressure. But resolution requires a level of dialogue that remains elusive.”