Federal grant helps wool trade diversity

The Australian Government is supporting market diversification for Australian greasy wool thanks to a project delivered by WoolProducers Australia.

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Murray Watt said the project, funded through two Australian Government Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation (ATMAC) grants worth $1.44 million, provided a clear direction for Australia’s wool industry to follow.

“WoolProducers have collated these two significant reports to look at ways Australia’s sheep farmers can have more competition and variation in the market for their wool,” Minister Watt said.

“Currently between 80 and 90% of Australia’s greasy wool exports go to the one destination for early-stage processing.

“We know that relying heavily on just one market carries a lot of risk.

“Disruptions to export markets can happen for a variety of reasons, whether by tariffs, quotas, or just shipping delays.

“Diversity is always a strength in supply chains, as it means a setback in one market doesn’t send a whole sector off-kilter.

“With Australian Government support WoolProducers have investigated possible new markets for Australian exporters to explore.

“Their final report not only provides a detailed analysis of the wool industry’s options for wool processing in Australia, but also a detailed investigation into the possibilities for working with Vietnam, India and Bangladesh.

“Now that this groundwork has been laid, the path is clear for our wool brokers and exporters to find new pathways for market diversification.”

The project was implemented in two phases, the first was a feasibility assessment of domestic and diversified early-stage wool processing, determining its trade risk mitigation benefits and the second was an investment prospectus in the form of a business investment case.