ChAFTA Case Study: Mining and Resources - Rio Tinto Australia

Mining and Resources – Rio Tinto Australia 

Rio Tinto is a leading global mining group that focuses on finding, mining and processing the Earth’s mineral resources. It is listed on the ASX, and is strongly represented globally. This global presence enables Rio Tinto to supply the right product, at the right quality, at the right time, including to China.

How will Rio Tinto benefit from ChAFTA? 

ChAFTA will provide opportunities in the best interests of both nations. China will see major benefits in the areas of agriculture and direct investment, while Australia will enjoy significant benefits from substantial goods and service market access to the world’s second biggest market.

In the energy, resources and manufacturing sector, zero tariffs on coking coal and non-coking coal trade with China will assist Rio Tinto to maintain its comparative advantages in relation to other export countries. The only tariffs that currently impact on Rio Tinto's business are the 3 to 6 per cent import duties on coal products. Coal duties were introduced in October 2014, and have put Australia at a disadvantage against its biggest competitor Indonesia.  By ratifying the ChAFTA, Australian coal exporters such as Rio Tinto will be able to reinstate their market competitiveness.

ChAFTA will also establish a specific mechanism to review and address non-tariff barriers (NTB), on a case-by-case basis, to increase transparency of these measures. These institutions will be important going forward as Australian companies continue to face non-tariff barriers in China. 

Rio Tinto will also benefit from services liberalisation, as market access in services increases competition and provides high-quality and value-for-money options in Australia and China. Chinese suppliers will have better access to support on Australian standards and legal and ethical requirements.