Sarah Dickson, Scotch Whisky Association, Global Affairs Director, along with a number of other leading UK business figures, will be joining the ministerial visit, led by Prime Minister, Rt Hon Theresa May MP, Rt Hon Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade and Rt Hon Greg Hands MP, Minister of State for Trade and Investment.
|SWA to join the government on trade visit to India|
India is a fast growing market for Scotch whisky, in the first half of this year exports to India were up 41% by volume (to the equivalent of 41 million bottles) and up 28% by value to almost £43m. But its potential is being held back by a 150% import tariff on Scotch. Currently Scotch only makes up around 1% of the total Indian spirits market and the industry has been calling for the tariff to be reduced for many years to encourage growth.
The Scotch Whisky Association, says a UK trade deal with India after Brexit would open up this key market for more Scotch whisky producers. Such a move would make Scotch more accessible to larger parts of the Indian population.
As well as a trade deal with India, the Scotch Whisky Association, is encouraging the UK Government to ensure global trading arrangements are better post-Brexit than those already in place. It would like to see greater support for strategically important export industries, such as Scotch Whisky, during a time of change - both in the UK and overseas.
Commenting on the news, Sarah Dickson, Scotch Whisky Association global affairs director, said: "I'm delighted to join the Prime Minister's visit to India with other senior UK business people. It's an excellent opportunity to find out more about India's economy and its attitude to trade. It should help more Scotch Whisky producers access this important and growing market.”
She went onto say: "It's also a chance to highlight the importance of a UK-India free trade deal. A cut in the 150% import tariff would give a major boost to Scotch Whisky. A further increase in Scotch exports to India would have a positive impact on the entire UK economy, given our position as the biggest single net contributor to the UK's trade balance in goods.”
Scotch whisky exports are worth around £4 billion a year, making it the biggest single net contributor to the UK's trade balance in goods and the country's largest food and drink export.
Posted by Steve Rush