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UK works to reduce export tariffs on Scotch whisky

Published 03 August 2017

The UK Government is laying the groundwork to decrease export tariffs on Scotch whisky and other Scottish produce in the wake of Brexit.

Scotch Whisky Association stated that whisky is a £5bn business in the UK and contributes significantly to the country’s economy.

It is estimated to account for three-fourths of Scotland’s total food and drink exports.

Presently, it is of utmost importance that the government will chalk out a plan to tackle tariffs and increase international sales, before Brexit.

The government is in talks with key trading partner countries including the US, Australia, China, India, Mexico, South Korea and the Gulf Cooperation Council.

The Department for International Trade has established 11 working groups to strengthen trade and commercial ties.

Ministerial levels talks have also been initiated with countries including Taiwan, Vietnam, India, Kazakhstan and Brazil.

Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell said: "Scotch Whisky is a world-class product, globally recognised for its quality and heritage, and the industry employs thousands of people in Scotland and around the rest of the UK.

"We are determined to open up new markets around the world for the very best whisky our distillers have to offer - and to drive down any tariffs they face.

"By strengthening ties with key partners, identifying new markets and tackling tariffs, the UK Government is paving the way towards an even brighter future for Scotland's whisky industry."

UK’s International Trade Secretary of State Dr Liam Fox stated that presently Scotch whisky comes under wide tariff ranging between 0 to more than 150%. The government is working to reduce export tariffs for Scottish goods including Scotch, gin and smoked salmon.

He also stated that the cost of selling overseas must be reduced for companies, in order to boost international sales.

Image: UK government in talks to reduce tariffs on Scotch whisky. Photo: Courtesy of Suat Eman/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.