2015-11 - Grain and Seed Exports - China's import conditions for Australian wheat and barley

​​​​​​18 February 2015


To advise Australian exporters that the import conditions for wheat (Triticum aestivum, Triticum durum and Triticum tauschii) and barley (Hodeum vulgare) for processing and consumption to the People’s Republic of China will be amended as a result of a new protocol to be implemented in April 2015.


A protocol was agreed between the governments of China and Australia in December 2014 to define China’s phytosanitary requirements for the trade of wheat and barley from Australia. An industry meeting was held in Melbourne, November 2014, outlining these changes. This protocol was established between the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People’s Republic of China (AQSIQ) and the Australian Government Department of Agriculture.

Technical discussions were held by the Department of Agriculture, representatives of the grains industry and a visiting Chinese technical delegation from 1–7 February 2015 regarding market maintenance for Australian wheat and barley exports to China.

The new protocol will be implemented in conjunction with Explanatory Notes submitted by the Department of Agriculture and the wheat and barley industry management plan to minimise foreign matter, including snails and weed seeds of quarantine concern to China.

The protocol was initialled by both parties in early February 2015 and it was agreed that the grain industry including Chinese importers, Australian growers, Australian exporters and bulk handlers can be notified of the new protocol.

Australia anticipates that the new wheat and barley export protocol will be officially signed in Beijing around April 2015. Prior to the official signing wheat and barley can be exported under both the old and new protocols.

Key Points

  • The new protocol will be fully effective from the date of formal signing by Australia and China and will remain effective for three years. Industry will be notified when the date of formal signing is confirmed.
  • Under the new protocol, China will issue import permits for wheat and barley exports to China.
  • The new import conditions require minimising the amount of foreign matter, weed seeds and other pests identified by China as a quarantine concern. This will be achieved through the implementation of the industry management plan submitted by the Grain Industry Market Access Forum (GIMAF) which has been accepted by China as an alternative to screening.  The industry management plan can be found on the GIMAF website.
  • The weeds of quarantine concern to China include Common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia), Winter wild oats (Avena ludoviciana), Winter wild oats (Avena sterilis), Rigid brome (Bromus rigidus), Russian knapweed (Centaurea repens), Doublegee (Emex australis), Prickly lettuce (Lactuca serriola), Darnel grass (Lolium temulentum), Johnson grass (Sorghum halepense) and Bathurst burr (Xanthium spinosum).
  • The other pests of quarantine concern to China include Vineyard snail (Cernuella virgata), Trogoderma spp., Red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta), Wheat eyespot (Pseudocercosporella herpotrichoides) and Barley stripe mosaic virus (BSMV).
  • Freedom from wheat eyespot (Pseudocercosporella herpotrichoides) may be certified without supporting evidence as it is not on the seed export pathway.  Test results for the presence of Barley stripe mosaic virus in the consignments must continue to be provided with the Notice of Intention to Export Prescribed Goods when submitted to the Department of Agriculture Authorised Officer.
  • While China accepts that absolute freedom from quarantine pests including weed seeds may not be possible, it is the responsibility of the exporters to ensure that the levels of these pests in wheat and barley consignments exported to China are minimised.
  • MICoR Plants will be updated on the formal signing of the wheat and barley protocol and compliance with new import conditions will be required for phytosanitary certificates to be issued.
  • To meet Australia’s legislative and importing country’s requirements, a Department of Agriculture Authorised Officer will conduct phytosanitary inspection prior to exporting wheat and barley to China. A phytosanitary certificate will be issued for consignments found to be compliant with the new wheat and barley protocol requirements. An additional declaration stating that “The consignment is in compliance with the protocol of phytosanitary requirements for Australian wheat and barley to China” will be endorsed on the phytosanitary certificate.

If you require further information, please contact the Grain and Seed Exports Program on 02 6272 3229 or email grain export.

For the Industry Management Plan to supply wheat and barley to the Chinese market please contact Tony Russell on 0419 890 669 or administration@gimaf.com.au.

Kylie Calhoun
Assistant Secretary
Plant Export Operations

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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