China has stepped up trade restrictions against Australia, suspending imports of some timber and barley, the agriculture minister said Tuesday, amid tension over the coronavirus, Hong Kong and the South China Sea.
A Chinese official said Tuesday that the trade quarantine measures were in compliance with the law. Chinese authorities also are delaying clearance for a $1.4 million shipment of live lobsters from Australia.
Beijing has blocked or limited imports of Australian coal, beef and other goods and announced an investigation into whether wine was being sold at improperly low prices.
Beijing wants the Australian government to drop its support for an investigation into the origin of the coronavirus pandemic that began in central China in December.