The Australian government is hopeful a meeting with senior Chinese trade officials could lead to the removal of sanctions on exported goods.
Agriculture Minister Murray Watt welcomed a meeting between Trade Minister Don Farrell and his Chinese counterpart Wang Wentao to be held next week for the first time in three years.
"There are lots of rumours flying around but nothing really confirmed about changes as far as they apply to agricultural products," Senator Watt told ABC radio about the sanctions.
"Obviously, it's an encouraging thing that our trade ministers can be having those discussions."
Complaints have been lodged through the World Trade Organisation against Chinese tariffs on Australian wine and barley, while exporters are also keen to see meat and lobster blockages lifted.
Australian coal shipments are understood to be on their way to China, ending an informal ban which has frustrated resource companies.
Asked how Australia is keeping the pressure on China to drop the sanctions, Senator Watt said: "By communicating that directly to them whenever we have that opportunity."
"I'm sure that Don will give that message in his meeting next week, just as the prime minister and the foreign minister have done already," he said.
Australia's trade relationship with Britain is also set for a boost with London preparing to ratify a bilateral free trade agreement.
The agreement will go back through the House of Lords for its third reading.
Senator Watt said Canberra continued to work hard to see the agreement come into effect as quickly as possible after the Australian parliament ticked off their side of the deal at the end of last year.
"There was some talk while we were in London that there would be a range of amendments to that legislation, which would have slowed things down," he said.
"But whether it was because of the meetings we had or other factors, pleasingly all of those amendments were withdrawn."
Australia is also pushing to seal a free trade agreement with the European Union, with some points of contention holding up a final deal.
The 14th round of negotiations will continue next week in Canberra at an official level.
Speaking in Brussels, Energy Minister Chris Bowen said an agreement would be mutually beneficial by providing new opportunities for businesses.
"Australia is renewable energy rich but we require significant investment to develop our green energy endowments," he said.
"European investment in Australian renewables is very welcome."
Australian Associated Press
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