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World Trade Organization

Summary of Australia's involvement in disputes currently before the World Trade Organization

Australia as a complaining party (complainant)

China – Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Measures on Wine From Australia (DS602)

On 22 June 2021, following the Government announcement, Australia requested consultations with the Government of the People's Republic of China concerning measures maintained by China on bottled wine imports from Australia. Australia claimed that China’s anti-dumping and countervailing measures on Australian wine appear to be inconsistent with certain provisions of the Agreement on Implementation of Article VI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994, the Agreement on Subsides and Countervailing Measures; and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994.

Australia held consultations with China on 9 August 2021.

On 16 September 2021, the Government announced that Australia would request that the WTO establish a panel to examine the matter.

The WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a panel on 26 October 2021. Brazil, Canada, Chinese Taipei, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, the Russian Federation, Singapore, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam joined the dispute as third parties.

On 29 April 2022, Australia filed its First Written Submission.

China – Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duty Measures on Barley From Australia (DS598)

On 16 December 2020, following the Government announcement, Australia requested consultations with the Government of the People's Republic of China concerning measures maintained by China on barley imports from Australia. Australia claimed that China’s anti-dumping and countervailing duties on Australian barley appear to be inconsistent with certain provisions of the Agreement on Implementation of Article VI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994, the Agreement on Subsides and Countervailing Measures; and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994.

Australia held consultations with China on 28 January 2021.

On 15 March 2021, the Government announced that Australia would request that the WTO establish a panel to examine the matter.

The WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a panel on 28 May 2021. At Australia’s request, on 3 September 2021 the WTO Director-General composed the panel. Brazil, Canada, the European Union, India, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, the Russian Federation, Singapore, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the United States joined the dispute as third parties.

On 1 November 2021, Australia filed its First Written Submission.

On 8 March 2022, Australia delivered its opening statement at the First Substantive Meeting with the Parties.

On 10 May 2022, Australia filed its Second Written Submission.

On 27 July 2022, Australia delivered its opening statement at the Second Substantive Meeting with the Parties.

India – Measures Concerning Sugar and Sugarcane (DS580)

On 28 February 2019, the Government announced that Australia, together with Brazil, was launching formal WTO dispute settlement action concerning India's sugar subsidies.

Australia requested consultations with India concerning measures maintained by the Government of India, and several Indian states, that support Indian producers of sugarcane and sugar. These measures comprise domestic support, including price support, and export subsidies. Australia claimed that the measures appear to be inconsistent with Articles 3.2, 3.3, 6.3, 7.2(b), 8, 9.1, 10, 18.2 and 18.3 of the Agreement on Agriculture; Articles 3 and 25 of the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures; and Article XVI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994.

Australia held consultations with India on 16 April 2019.

On 12 July 2019, the Government announced that, together with Brazil and Guatemala, Australia would request that the WTO establish a panel to examine the matter.

The WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a Panel on 15 August 2019. At Australia’s request, on 28 October 2019 the WTO Director-General composed the Panel. Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, the European Union, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Japan, Panama, the Russian Federation, Thailand and the United States joined the dispute as third parties.

Panels in complaints brought by Brazil (DS579) and Guatemala (DS581) were also established by the WTO Dispute Settlement Body on 15 August 2019, and composed by the WTO Director-General, at the request of Brazil and Guatemala, on 28 October 2019. The panels in the three disputes had the same panellists, and the disputes had a harmonised timetable.

On 16 January 2020, Australia filed its first written submission.

On 8 December 2020, Australia delivered its opening statement at the First Substantive Meeting with the Parties and Third Parties.

On 11 February 2021, Australia filed its second written submission.

On 23 March 2021, Australia delivered its opening statement at the Second Substantive Meeting with the Parties.

On 20 May 2021 Australia filed its integrated executive summary of its submissions.

On 14 December 2021, the Panel issued its Final Report. The Final Report is available on the WTO website DS580 India – Measures Concerning Sugar and Sugarcane.

On 24 December 2021, India notified the WTO of its decision to appeal the Final Report of the Panel.

On 11 January 2022, Australia notified the WTO of its opposition to India’s appeal and its intention to defend the appeal when the Appellate Body is functioning and  able to hear the appeal.

Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment media release: WTO decision on sugar subsidies

Information on the dispute is also available on the WTO website DS580 India – Measures Concerning Sugar and Sugarcane

Canada – Measures Governing the Sale of Wine (DS537)

On 12 January 2018, Australia requested consultations with Canada concerning measures maintained by the Canadian Government and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia governing the sale of wine. Australia claimed that the measures appear to be inconsistent with Articles III:1, III:2, III:4, XVII:1 and XXIV:12 of the GATT 1994. Argentina, Chile, China, Chinese Taipei, the European Union, India, Israel, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, South Africa, Ukraine, Uruguay and the United States joined the dispute as third parties.

Australia held consultations with Canada on 1 March 2018.

The WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a panel on 26 September 2018. At Australia's request, on 7 March 2019 the WTO Director-General composed the panel. Argentina; Chile; China; European Union; India; Israel; Korea, Republic of; Mexico; New Zealand; Russian Federation; South Africa; Chinese Taipei; Ukraine; United States; Uruguay joined the dispute as third parties.

On 29 April 2019 the Panel circulated the Working Procedures of the Panel and Timetable. On 10 May 2019 the Panel circulated Additional Working Procedures for Open Meetings.

In April 2019 Australia and Canada reached an agreement with respect to measures in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Canada has now agreed to remove British Columbia's discriminatory measures from 1 November 2019. As a result of this agreement, Australia will not proceed with these aspects of its claim.

On 10 May 2019, Australia filed its first written submission.

On 18 July 2019, Australia delivered its opening statement at the First Substantive Meeting with the Parties and Third Parties.

On 19 August 2019, Australia filed its first integrated executive summary of its submissions.

On 30 September 2019, Australia filed its second written submission.

On 3 December 2019, Australia delivered its opening statement at the Second Substantive Meeting with the Parties and Third Parties.

On 10 February 2020 Australia filed its second integrated executive summary of its submissions.

On 12 May 2021 Australia and Canada notified the WTO that they had reached a mutually agreed solution.

On 25 May 2021, the Panel issued its Final Report

Announcements on settlements:

On 10 April 2019, A win for the Australian wine industry

On 27 July 2020, More Australian wine set for Canadian shelves

On 22 April 2021, Win for Australian Wine in Canada

Information on the dispute is also available on the WTO website at DS537 Canada – Measures Governing the Sale of Wine.

Australia as a defending party (respondent)

Australia – Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duty Measures on Certain Products from China (DS603)

The People’s Republic of China requested consultations with Australia on 24 June 2021 in relation to Australia’s imposition of:

  • anti-dumping measures on wind towers, deep drawn stainless steel sinks and railway wheels from China; and
  • countervailing measures on deep drawn stainless steel sinks from China.

Australia held consultations with China on 11 August 2021.

On 28 February 2022, the WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a panel to examine this dispute. Seventeen WTO Members have joined as third parties to the dispute: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chinese Taipei, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.

Australia – Anti-Dumping Measures on A4 Copy Paper (DS529)

Indonesia requested consultations with Australia on 1 September 2017 in relation to Australia's imposition of anti-dumping measures on certain imports of A4 copy paper from Indonesia.

Australia held consultations with Indonesia on 30 October 2017.

On 27 April 2018, the WTO Dispute Settlement Body established a panel to examine this dispute. Canada; China; European Union; Egypt; India; Israel; Japan; Korea, Republic of; Russian Federation; Singapore; Thailand; Ukraine; United States; Viet Nam joined the dispute as third parties.

On 7 November 2018, Australia filed its First Written Submission.

On 18 December 2018, Australia delivered its opening statement at the First Substantive Meeting with the Parties and Third Parties.

On 1 February 2019, Australia filed its first integrated executive summary of its submissions.

On 1 March 2019, Australia filed its Second Written Submission.

On 14 May 2019, Australia delivered its opening statement at the Second Substantive Meeting with the Parties and Third Parties.

On 5 July 2019, Australia filed its second integrated executive summary of its submissions.

On 4 December 2019, the Panel issued its Final Report. The Final Report is available at the WTO website DS529 Australia – Anti-Dumping Measures on A4 Copy Paper.

The Panel confirmed that Australia's finding of a "particular market situation" in the Indonesian A4 copy paper market was consistent with the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement, but found that Australia acted inconsistently in a specific application of Australia's anti-dumping laws.
Australia and Indonesia agreed not to appeal the Panel's findings, and the Panel report was adopted by the WTO Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) at its regular meeting on 27 January 2020. On adoption, Australia committed to ensuring "prompt implementation of the recommendations and rulings of the Dispute Settlement Body within the framework of Australia's anti-dumping system, in a manner consistent with Australia's WTO obligations".

Australia and Indonesia have agreed that Australia would have a "reasonable period of time" (8 months from 27 January 2020) in which to implement the Panel's findings, with an extension of one month in the event of unavoidable delay. The Anti‑Dumping Commission initiated a "review of measures" for the purpose of bringing the disputed measures into compliance with Australia's WTO obligations.

On 14 August 2020, the Anti-Dumping Commissioner (Commissioner) recommended that the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews, revoke the measures insofar as they apply to the two Indonesian exporters. On 11 September 2020, Minister Andrews accepted the Commissioner’s recommendation to revoke the dumping duty notice insofar as it applies to exports of A4 copy paper to Australia from Indah Kiat and Pindo Deli. The public notice to give effect to Minister Andrews’s decision, and the Commissioner’s Final Report, were published on the Commission’s website on 14 September 2020: https://www.industry.gov.au/regulations-and-standards/anti-dumping-and-countervailing-system/anti-dumping-commission-current-cases/547.

As required under WTO rules, Australia notified the DSB of its full implementation of the recommendations and rulings of the DSB in DS529, within the "reasonable period of time" for implementation agreed with Indonesia.

Unless and until anything happens to alter the Minister’s decision in a manner that raises a dispute about whether Australia has implemented the Panel’s findings, Australia considers the issue of implementation to be resolved.

Australia and Indonesia signed an agreement on 2 October with respect to Articles 21 and 22 of the Understanding on rules and procedures governing the settlement of disputes on how to sequence any further WTO dispute proceedings that may be required to resolve this dispute, should a disagreement as to compliance arise in the future.

Information on the dispute is also available on the WTO website at  DS529 Australia – Anti-Dumping Measures on A4 Copy Paper.

Australia as a third party

Australia often joins disputes as a third party when it has commercial and/or legal interests in the matters in question. This provides an opportunity to present our views to the panel and, if the panel report is appealed, to the Appellate Body.

China — Anti-Dumping measures on stainless steel products from Japan (DS601)

On 11 June 2021, Japan requested consultations with China with respect to measures imposing anti-dumping duties on stainless steel billets, hot-rolled coils, and hot-rolled plates from Japan.  Japan claimed that the measures imposed by China are inconsistent with the Anti-Dumping Agreement and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994.

A panel was established on 27 September 2021. Australia, Brazil, Canada, EU, India, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Chinese Taipei, Vietnam and the United States reserved their right to participate as a third party.

Australia filed its third party written submission on 9 May 2022, delivered its third party oral statement on 30 June 2022, filed its responses to questions on 19 July 2022 and filed its executive summary on 25 July 2022.

European Union and certain Member states – Certain measures concerning palm oil and oil palm crop-based biofuels (DS600)

On 15 January 2021, Malaysia requested consultations with the European Union regarding certain measures imposed by the European Union and its member States concerning palm oil and oil palm crop-based biofuels from Malaysia. Malaysia claimed that the measures imposed by the European Union and certain Member States are inconsistent with the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994 and the Subsidies and Countervailing Measures Agreement.

A panel was established on 28 May 2021. Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Norway, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the United States reserved their right to participate as a third party.

Australia filed its third party written submission on 14 December 2021, delivered its third party oral statement on 11 May 2022, and filed its responses to questions on 20 June 2022.

Panama — Measures concerning the importation of certain products from Costa Rica (DS599)

On 11 January 2021, Costa Rica requested consultations with Panama regarding measures on the importation of a number of products originating in Costa Rica, including: strawberries, dairy products, bovine, pork, poultry and turkey meat products, fish food, fresh pineapple, and plantains and bananas. Costa Rica claimed that the measures imposed by Panama are inconsistent with the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, the Agreement on Agriculture and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994.

A panel was established on 27 September 2021. Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the EU, India, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States reserved their right to participate as a third party.

European Union – Certain measures concerning palm oil and oil palm crop-based biofuels (DS593)

On 9 December 2019, Indonesia requested consultations with the European Union regarding certain measures imposed by the European Union and its member States concerning palm oil and oil palm crop-based biofuels from Indonesia. Indonesia claimed that the measures imposed by the European Union and certain Member States are inconsistent with the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994 and the Subsidies and Countervailing Measures Agreement.

A panel was established on 29 July 2020. Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey and the United States reserved their right to participate as a third party.

Australia filed its third party written submission on 19 March 2021, responses to questions from the Panel on 27 May 2021 and executive summary on 2 June 2021.

Archived disputes

Archived disputes of Australia as a defending party (respondent)

  • Australia – Certain Measures Concerning Trademarks, and Other Plain Packaging Requirements Applicable to Tobacco Products and Packaging (DS434) and Australia – Certain Measures Concerning Trademarks, Geographical Indications and Other Plain Packaging Requirements Applicable to Tobacco Products and Packaging (DS435, DS441, DS458 and DS467)
  • Australia – Measures Affecting the Importation of Apples from New Zealand (DS367)
  • Australia – Certain Measures Affecting the Importation of Fresh Pineapple Fruit (DS271)
  • Australia – Certain Measures Affecting the Importation of Fresh Fruit and Vegetables (DS270)

Archived disputes of Australia as a third party

  • Canada – Measures Governing the Sale of Wine in Grocery Stores (DS520 and DS531)
  • European Union – Measures Related to Price Comparison Methodologies
  • Russia – Measures concerning Traffic in Transit (DS512)
  • China – Tariff Rate Quotas for Certain Agricultural Products (DS517)
  • China – Domestic Support for Agricultural Producers (DS511)
  • Indonesia – Measures concerning the importation of Bovine Meat (DS506)
  • Brazil – Certain Measures Concerning Taxation and Charges (DS497)
  • Ukraine – Anti-Dumping Measures on Ammonium Nitrate from Russia (DS493)
  • Indonesia – Safeguard on Certain Iron or Steel Products (DS496)
  • Indonesia – Safeguard on Certain Iron or Steel Products (DS490)
  • China – Measures Related to Demonstration Bases and common Service Platforms Programmes (DS489)
  • United States – Conditional Tax Incentives for Large Civil Aircraft (DS487)
  • Russia – Tariff Treatment of Certain Agricultural and Manufacturing Products (DS485)
  • Indonesia – Measures Concerning the Importation of Chicken Meat and Chicken Products (DS484)
  • European Union – Anti-Dumping Measures on Biodiesel from Indonesia (DS480)
  • Indonesia – Importation of Horticultural Products, Animals and Animal Products (DS477 and 478)
  • Russian Federation – Measures on the Importation of Live Pigs, Pork and Other Pig Products from the European Union (DS475)
  • European Union – Cost Adjustment Methodologies and Certain Anti-Dumping Measures on Imports from Russia (DS474 and DS494)
  • European Union – Anti-Dumping Measures on Biodiesel from Argentina (DS473)
  • Brazil – Certain Measures Concerning Taxation and Charges (DS472)
  • Ukraine – Definitive Safeguard Measures on Certain Passenger Cars (DS468)
  • Indonesia – Importation of Horticultural Products, Animals and Animal Products (DS465, DS466)
  • Argentina – Measures Relating to Trade in Goods and Services (DS453)
  • United States – Countervailing and Anti-Dumping Measures on Certain Products from China (DS449)
  • US – Measures Affecting the Importation of Animals, Meat and other Animal Products from Argentina (DS447)
  • European Union and a Member State – Certain Measures Concerning the Importation of Biodiesels (DS443)
  • Argentina – Measures Affecting the Importation of Goods (DS444, DS445, DS446 and DS438)
  • United States – Countervailing Duty Measures on Certain Products from China (DS437)
  • United States – Countervailing Measures on Certain Hot-Rolled Carbon Steel Flat Products from India (DS436)
  • China – Measures Related to the Exportation of Rare Earths, Tungsten and Molybdenum (DS431, DS432 and DS433)
  • India – Measures Concerning the Importation of Certain Agricultural Products from the United States (DS430)
  • Canada – Certain Measures Affecting the Renewable Energy Generation Sector (DS412) and Canada – Measures Relating to the Feed-in Tariff Program (DS426)
  • United States – Certain Country of Origin Labelling (COOL) Requirements (DS384, DS386)
  • United States – Measures Concerning the Importation, Marketing and Sale of Tuna and Tuna Products (DS381)
  • United States – Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft (Second Complaint) (DS353)
  • European Communities – Measures Concerning Meat and Meat Products (Hormones): Recourse to Article 21.5 by the European Communities (DS26 and DS48)
  • European Communities and Certain Member States – Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft (DS316)
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