UK Whisky Sales Soar in Singapore as Trade Opportunities Expand Across the Asia-Pacific
In a historic move, the UK’s decision to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) in July 2023 has created opportunities for British drinks exporters.
Emerging as the first European member and first new member outside the original signatories in 2018 of this influential Asia-Pacific trade bloc, the UK is utilising the reduced barriers in a region poised to reshape the global economy.
Although we have already seen increases in drinks exports, the true benefits for the UK will come into force in 2024 when domestic ratification procedures are completed.
Whisky Exports to Singapore
Singapore has witnessed a dramatic surge in UK whisky sales, solidifying its status as a hotspot for this iconic British spirit. Over the past year, Scotch whisky exports to Singapore have reached a staggering £380 million, marking an exceptional 31% (£90 million) increase compared to the previous year.
Beyond whisky, Singapore emerges as a fervent supporter of the UK’s broader spirits industry. The UK gin sector witnesses a remarkable 56% (£3 million) surge in current prices in exports to Singapore, driven by a growing enthusiasm for gin and tonics and the iconic Singapore Sling.
Scotch Whisky in Malaysia
The allure of Scotch whisky extends beyond Singapore, as Malaysia experiences a remarkable 43% increase (£11 million) in Scotch whisky exports. This underscores the growing international appreciation for this classic British libation’s rich and nuanced flavours.
Boosting Whisky Exports to New Heights
While the UK already boasts bilateral trade agreements with nine CPTPP members, the imminent formal inclusion into the CPTPP next year promises an even more favourable landscape. With tariffs on 99% of UK goods exports reduced to 0%, the whisky industry is poised to scale new heights in key markets such as Singapore and Malaysia.
Scotch Whisky Association Chief Executive, Mark Kent said:
“Exports of Scotch Whisky to the CPTPP countries have grown significantly in the past decade, collectively reaching more than £1.1bn in 2022.
“The UK’s accession to CPTPP will open up new opportunities for Scotch Whisky and other UK products in key markets in the region, including the phased elimination of Malaysia’s import tariff.
“With the potential for more countries to join CPTPP in the coming years, Scotch Whisky will benefit from further liberalisation in the region.”
As the UK prepares to formalise its entry into the CPTPP next year, UK whisky sales in Singapore are a highlight in the region.
Investment at the Right Time
Following this news, it is easy to see why Scotch whisky brands are investing in their operations in the UK. Whisky drinkers in Asia want a taste of whisky produced in Scotland as whisky produced anywhere else in the world is not the same.
Whisky brands realise this and we can see from Chivas Brothers planning to build a new distillery on Islay, to Brave New Spirits building the Witchburn distillery.
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