UK-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement Welcomed By SWA

The international director at the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has welcomed news of a new free trade agreement (FTA) that has been made between the UK and Vietnam, which is an important emerging market for Scotch whisky producers.

Ian McKendrick observed that the gradual elimination of the 45 per cent import tariff in Vietnam will be an especially welcome move for distillers who are keen to export to the country, with sales of Scotch whisky in the region growing significantly in the last ten years.

“The FTA commits to further protection of Scotch Whisky alongside its GI registration in Vietnam, which will help boost consumer confidence in premium products like Scotch Whisky by making them more widely available and lessening the risk of smuggling and counterfeits,” he went on to say.

Mr McKendrick further added that this development is also an important step forward to the UK’s accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, which will deliver new opportunities for Scotch whisky, as well as other products, in key markets in Vietnam.

This comes after a Mexico-UK spirits agreement was made at the start of the month (December), giving post-Brexit protection to Scotch whisky and Mexican spirits in both countries.

It will continue the recognition of Scotch whiskey and Irish whiskey, as well as Mezcal, tequila, Sotol, Bacanora and Charanda after the UK leaves the EU.

Last year, Mexico was in the top ten export markets for Scotch whisky by value, reaching a total of £120.9 million. It is also the sixth largest market for Scotch whisky by volume globally.

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