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WHISKY JOURNAL

WHISKY JOURNAL

Joe Biden removes tariffs on Scotch whisky brought in by Donald Trump

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Joe Biden removes tariffs on Scotch whisky brought in by Donald Trump

Photo Credit: Daily Record

A five-year deal to end punitive tariffs on malt whisky exports to the USA has been welcomed by the industry after a breakthrough in talks on the Airbus-Boeing dispute.

A 25 per cent tariff was placed on single malt Scotch whisky by the Donald Trump administration as part of a trade dispute between the US and EU countries over aerospace subsidies.

Following talks between International Trade Secretary Liz Truss and US Trade Representative Katherine Tai, both sides have agreed to halt retaliatory tariffs for five years.

The tariffs have led to whisky exports to the US falling by more than a third, amounting to more than £600 million in lost sales, since the 25 per cent tariff was imposed in October 2019.

A short, fourth month suspension of tariffs was secured by Truss in March but the US tariffs are now set to be suspended for five years.

Other UK industries including cashmere and construction vehicles were also affected by the trade dispute, which has made exporting to the US harder since October 2019.

Karen Betts, chief executive of the The Scotch Whisky Association SWA, said: “The past two years have been extremely damaging for our industry, with the loss of over £600 million in exports to the United States caused by a 25 per cent tariff on single malt Scotch whisky imposed as a result of the long-running dispute between US and European aircraft manufacturers.”

“Today’s agreement is a culmination of many months of intensive negotiations and we’re grateful to Liz Truss, International Trade Secretary, and Katherine Tai, US trade representative, and their teams for their hard work.

“Given, however, that this deal suspends tariffs rather than fully resolving the underlying dispute, what’s critical now is that the governments and aerospace companies on both sides stick to their commitments and work with one another constructively.”

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said: “The suspension of retaliatory tariffs for five years is great news for the Scottish whisky industry – a cornerstone of Scotland’s economy.

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said: “The suspension of retaliatory tariffs for five years is great news for the Scottish whisky industry – a cornerstone of Scotland’s economy.

“The UK Government has fought incredibly hard on this issue, petitioning the highest levels of the US administration to remove tariffs which were harming our Scottish exporters. We are very pleased to have brought an end to the trade dispute.”

“The UK Government has fought incredibly hard on this issue, petitioning the highest levels of the US administration to remove tariffs which were harming our Scottish exporters. We are very pleased to have brought an end to the trade dispute.”

The SNP’s David Linden MP said the resolution opened the door for more support for the industry.

He said: “Whilst this announcement is very welcome after months of cross-party campaigning, the losses to Scotch Whisky exports have been eye-watering and it will take time for the industry to get back on its feet. That’s why further support is absolutely vital.

“We need to see continued and intensified support for Scotch whisky and that includes a response to the long-awaited Treasury review of alcohol duty.”

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