spiritsNEWS December 2023

spiritsEUROPE welcomes the additional suspension of EU tariffs on US Whiskey & Bourbon

spiritsEUROPE welcomes the 15-month additional suspension of EU rebalancing tariffs on US Whiskey & Bourbon in the frame of the EU-US steel & aluminium dispute as provided by the Implementing Regulation published in today’s EU Official Journal. This is a very positive development and a great relief to the many unrelated sectors targeted in this dispute, not least the spirits sector – as the deadline for the end of the first suspension was getting dangerously close. We are very grateful to the EU for this wise and constructive decision, which provides unrelated sectors with much-needed certainty and breathing space. In doing so, the EU has adverted what would have amounted to a major trade barrier (50% ad valorem tariffs on US Whiskey & Bourbon), ensuring that tariff-free transatlantic trade in spirits may continue uninterrupted.

While the news of the prolongation of the tariff suspension is greeted with relief and joy within our sector, we also wish to stress the importance of finding a permanent solution to this dispute and the EU-US disputes on large civil aircraft (otherwise known as “Airbus Boeing disputes”),  so that retaliatory tariffs on our products may be lifted for good. The removal of tariffs in transatlantic trade in spirits more than 25 years ago provided a huge boost to our sector on both sides of the Atlantic, and it is imperative that we go back to it once and for all, particularly against the backdrop of a challenging year for our sector, as a result of difficult economic conditions, not least in the United States.

The EU announcement regarding the extension of the tariff suspension can be found here.

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