The research suggests that China’s net wine imports could rise by up to 790 million litres by 2018, which could be good news for Australian wine producers.
Professor Kym Anderson the executive director at the centre, has said: “It is the sheer size of China’s adult population of 1.1 billion people, and the fact that grape wine still accounts for less than four per cent of Chinese alcohol consumption, that makes the import growth opportunity unprecedented.
“We project that China’s net imports of wine could rise by between 330 and 790 million litres during 2011-2018 once the full impacts of China’s recent bilateral free trade agreements with Australia, Chile and New Zealand are felt.”
Professor Anderson added that while it’s true there has been a blip in the growth in China’s imports because of their austerity measures, “our expectations looking several years forward is that, that will be eclipsed by general growth in the demand for wine by the community at large, as distinct from those who have big expense sheets or are using it for gifting.”
The growth area is more likely to be at the premium and super-premium end by ordinary consumers doing it for themselves not doing it for giving away as a gift or for lavish dining.
The research was supported with funding from the Australian Grape and Wine Authority and the “Asia’s Evolving Role in Global Wine Markets” working paper can be downloaded from the Wine Education Research Centre’s website.