Distilled Spirits Council of the United States Statement

in response to the Airbus statement  regarding the WTO civil aircraft dispute

“U.S. distillers welcome today’s announcement regarding Airbus.  We hope that this is a significant step toward resolving this longstanding trade dispute that will result in the prompt elimination of tariffs on U.S. and EU distilled spirits.  Distillers on both sides of the Atlantic have suffered enough.”

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Background:

Since October 18, 2019, the U.S. has imposed a 25 percent tariff on imports of Single Malt Scotch Whisky; Single Malt Irish Whiskey from Northern Ireland; liqueurs and cordials from Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and United Kingdom; and certain wines from France, Germany, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

According to the latest data available:

  • U.S. imports of Scotch Whisky are down by nearly 33 percent between October 2019-May 2020 ($723 million) compared to October 2018-May 2019 ($1.01 billion).
  • U.S. imports of liqueurs and cordials from Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom are down by approximately 23 percent between October 2019-May 2020 ($288 million) compared October 2018-May 2019 ($372 million).
  • U.S. imports of certain wines from France, Germany, Spain and the UK are down by approximately 44 percent between October 2019-May 2020 ($587 million) compared October 2018-May 2019 ($1.04 billion).

In addition, the EU has imposed a retaliatory tariff of 25 percent on all U.S. Whiskey imports since June 22, 2018. According to a DISCUS analysis, American Whiskey exports to the EU have tumbled by 33 percent and cost $300 million since the EU’s 25 percent retaliatory tariff went into effect. The EU has stated it may impose retaliatory tariffs this spring on U.S. rum, vodka and brandy in its parallel case at the World Trade Organization concerning Boeing. In addition, the EU is scheduled to increase its retaliatory tariff on American Whiskey to 50 percent in spring 2021.