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Budget submissions in from WSTA and SWA

Published:  23 July, 2008

The Wine and Spirits Trade Association (WSTA) and the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) today presented their Budget submissions to Treasury minister Angela Eagle.

The WSTA submission calls for:

A freeze in the excise duty rates for wine and fortified wine

A freeze in the excise duty rates for spirits

Parity in still and sparkling wine excise duty rates

Announcement of changes to wine duty in Pre-Budget Report

Jeremy Beadles said: "We welcome the chancellor's recent comments ruling out big rises in excise duty to tackle problem drinking. We agree it is wrong to punish the majority for the sins of a few and we continue to work with government and other agencies to address this issue."

The SWA submission called for a freeze on whisky duty.

Gavin Hewitt, SWA chief executive, said: "The government has recognised the benefits of a fairer alcohol duty policy in recent years and we will be urging the Minister to maintain that welcome policy by freezing spirits duty in the March Budget.

"The Budget is always a pivotal date in our calendar but this year's Budget comes at a time when the industry is facing rising input and energy costs. Spirits duty stability boosts competitiveness and has helped distillers to invest heavily in their operations and supply chain across Scotland, benefiting the wider economy and ensuring Scotch Whisky is well placed as new opportunities develop in the highly competitive international market."