Joint call for action

Scotch and US trade groups call for end to whisky tariffs

Karen Betts SWA

Karen Betts: ‘exports are markedly down’ (pic: Terry Murden)

Scotch whisky leader Karen Betts was joined by her US counterpart tonight to call for the lifting of tariffs that threaten to cost Scottish distillers £100 million in lost sales.

The chief executives of the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) and the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) have called on the UK and US governments to find a solution to a dispute which is inflicting damage on the industry.

A 25% tariff was imposed on imports of US whiskey into the EU in June 2018 in response to US tariffs on European steel and aluminium. 

In October last year the US imposed a 25% tariff on imports of single malt scotch whisky to the US in the long-running dispute over EU and US subsidies to Airbus and Boeing. 

Scotch and American whiskies have traded tariff-free across the Atlantic for more than 25 years. However, the current dispute is harming investment, productivity, jobs and growth.

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