Australian wine continues to be in high demand worldwide – and it was no different this week at one of the most influential global trade shows.
Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Anne Ruston said Australia was bestowed as the Country of Honour at Vinexpo in Hong Kong, the only major wine and spirits trade exhibition in the Asia-Pacific region.
"There were over 150 Australian exhibitors representing 225 wine brands with rare exposure to over 15,000 importers, buyers and sommeliers from across the world," Minister Ruston said.
"It was an invaluable opportunity to further enhance the reputation of Australian wines with key trading partners."
Minister Ruston said the Turnbull Government supported Australia's presence at Vinexpo through the $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package, as part of a three-year plan to increase the value of wine exports up to a record $3.5 billion.
"The Government is undertaking a bold drive to grow exports of our high-quality agricultural products—including wine—to consumers around the Asia-Pacific and beyond," Minister Ruston said.
"This benefits rural and regional Australia, and the more than 170,000 people employed in the wine sector across the nation.
"We aren't going to get rich selling to ourselves – the more people purchasing Australian wine, the better.
"I believe our wine trading relationships will continue to go from strength to strength—to the mutual benefit of farmers, producers and consumers around the Asia-Pacific.
"The wine industry has contributed to the creation of one million jobs in five years under the Coalition."
Exports to China, including Hong Kong and Macau, increased by 51 per cent over the year last March to $1.04 billion in March 2018. Globally, Australian wine exports are at their highest in a decade.
The agricultural trading relationship with Hong Kong will further develop as each government concludes the Australia-Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement, designed to complement the Australia-China Free Trade Agreement and integrate the Australian economy with Asia.
Among other engagements Minister Ruston held several bilateral discussions, joined an Australian marketing conference, presented at a University of Adelaide international collaboration and had meetings with key Australian exporters from across a range of agricultural fields.