Indonesia relaxes list of eligible beef, offal exports from Australia

Beef Central, 23/09/2016

THE Indonesian Government has lifted restrictions on imports of certain secondary cuts of beef and offals from Australia.

The restrictions were imposed in 2015, as part of Indonesia’s determination to lift try to lift self-sufficiency in its own beef production, following the 2011 live export market closure.

The revised regulations came into effect on 16 August and provide for an expanded list of eligible beef cuts eligible for export to Indonesia, including secondary cuts like knuckles, topsides, insides and outsides, chucks blades, brisket and shin-shank. The relaxation also covers edible offals such as livers, hearts, feet and lungs.

The explosion in beef prices in Indonesia over the past year has inevitably provided a catalyst for the recent policy changes.

Equally importantly, Indonesian importers can now apply to import beef at any time of the year, with import permits valid for six months.

Agriculture minister Barnaby Joyce said this decision provided more certainty for commercial partnerships between importers and exporters, would reduce costs in the supply chain and allowed for better planning to ensure demand can be reliably met.

Before the restrictions were put in place in January 2015, Australia shipped almost 20,000 tonnes of secondary beef cuts and offals to Indonesia, worth around $42 million out of a total 2014 boxed beef trade with Indonesia worth $327 million.

“The relaxations reflect, in part at least, the substantial investment by all of industry in Australia in the relationship with Indonesia, which is now starting to bear fruit,” Australian Meat Industry Council processing director Steve Martyn said.

“This move augers well for a positive outcome for cattle and beef, when Australia and Indonesian sit down to negotiate terms under the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, discussions over which recommenced in May this year,” Mr Martyn said.

“What’s most important here is that Indonesia appears to have moved away from the self-sufficiency goals of the past, to something which is more balanced, and this development is a reflection of it,” he said.

Agriculture minister Joyce welcomed the decision to reopen a traditionally valuable market for Australian beef producers, meat processors and exporters, providing more certainty to rural and regional communities.

“Over the next few decades significant economic and population growth is expected to change Indonesia’s demand for food. Diets will become more diverse and demand for quality protein will increase,” he said.

The population of Indonesia is forecast to increase by almost 25 percent or 62 million people to 322 million by 2050, according to a United Nations Population Division forecast.

“It’s a win–win for both nations: Indonesian consumers will have a wider range of quality beef products to choose from, Indonesian importers can better plan for and manage demand, and Australian exporters regain access to a market in which we can compete very strongly on our merits,” Mr Joyce said.

“Indonesia is a highly valued trading partner and the Government has worked hard to establish Australia as a trusted and reliable supplier of safe, high-quality protein,” he said.

“Australian exporters now have the opportunity to build on our strong relationship to significantly expand beef exports to Indonesia.

Offal and beef exports to Indonesia have slipped substantially since the 2011 live export crisis. Last year beef volumes totalled 39,000t, down from 53,000t in 2014.


Source: Some content in this article sourced from Ministerial press release.


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