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Scotch whisky: US set to suspend 25% tariffs for five years

Crippling US tariffs on single malt whisky exports are set to be suspended for five years, we understand.

The 25% whisky tax will be lifted after the US, EU and UK reached an agreement in the long-running row over subsidies to aircraft manufacturing giants Boeing and Airbus.

US trade representative Katherine Tai said the agreement resolved a longstanding “trade irritant in the US-Europe relationship”, and paved the way for a five-year suspension of tariffs that were imposed on $7.5 billion worth of EU goods by Donald Trump in October 2018.

Ms Tai said that “instead of fighting with one of our closest allies, we are finally coming together against a common threat”.

Former US president Donald Trump

We understand a similar UK agreement will be announced today.

The move follows a short fourth month suspension of tariffs secured by Trade Secretary Liz Truss in March.

The industry is said to be delighted by the agreement, which will give a welcome boost after the pandemic.

In all, whisky exports to the US have fallen by more than a third – amounting to more than £500m – since the 25% tariff was imposed in October 2019.

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