Australian wines test new path to China

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Australia Post has collaborated with the Alibaba Group’s business-to-business (B2B) online platform 1688.com and the Margaret River Wine Association to broaden export channels for Australia wines to the Chinese wine market.

Margaret River vineyardsImage: Margaret River vinyeards © Decanter

The newly launched ‘Australian Pavilion’ on 1688.com provides opportunities for Australian wine producers to sell their wines directly to Chinese importers in bulk at wholesale price.

China signed a Free Trade Agreement with Australia in May 2015 and agreed to gradually abolish tariffs on imports from Australia. According to Chinese customs figures, Australia accounted for 14% of China’s total wine import volume and 23% of the total value in the first nine months in 2015.

Australia Post, the government-owned postal service company, believes that the new platform is a great way to tap into the growing demand for authentic Australian products in China.

'1688.com offers the perfect solution for small and medium businesses to drive more sales in China,’ said Ahmed Fahour, Australia Post’s managing director and CEO.

The partnership will provide a ‘one-stop eCommerce, logistics and delivery solution’ for the Australian wine producers, covering various aspects such as labelling, packaging, pallet consolidation, sea and air transport, customs clearance, warehousing and distribution.

The first wine region chosen to sell via the 1688.com Australian Pavilion is Margaret River in West Australia. Five wineries from the region – Flametree Wines, Laurance Wines, Happs Wines, Rosily Vineyard and EVOI Wines – have listed 10 wines on the website.

Nick Power, CEO of Margaret River Wine Association, said, ‘The 1688.com Australian Pavilion is the culmination of many years of work to solve a major obstacle for the Australian wine industry, offering a simple avenue to sell and ship to China in bulk.’

Australia Post plans to bring wines from other wine regions over the coming months.

It also teamed up with Tmall.com, Alibaba Group’s business-to-consumer (B2C) marketplace earlies this year.

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