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The European Wine Companies Committee (CEEV) regrets the US decision to impose tariffs on EU wines

Brussels, 3 October 2019 – In the framework of the EU-US trade dispute on Measures Affecting Trade in Large Civil Aircraft under the WTO Dispute Settlement Understanding, the US government has announced its decision to impose a new 25% tariffs on French, German, Spanish and UK still wines from 18 October 2019.

“We regret this decision that harms directly EU wine companies, but not only, as our US importers and consumers will also be affected by the new tariffs. We’ll continue to support the European Commission and Member States in their effort to find a negotiated position.” said Jean Marie Barillère, President of CEEV.

De-escalating transatlantic trade tensions is essential to our wine trade relationship, which is the largest in the world and a key driver for EU and US wine exports growth. From both sides of the Atlantic, wine companies are conscient of the importance and benefits of maintaining a free wine trade environment between the two blocks.

In 2018, EU wine exports to the US reached € 3,76 billion which made again the US the largest export market for EU wines, from which the exports of French, German, Spanish and UK still wines represented €1,38 billion (36% of the total). For US producers, the EU market is also the most important in value and in 2018, US exports reached €426 million.

“The disruption caused by retaliatory tariffs will result in significant reduction of business activity as loss of market share in the US for our French, German, Spanish and UK operators that would take long to recover.” said Ignacio Sánchez Recarte, Secretary General of CEEV. “From the wine sector, we do not understand why agricultural products such as ours are involved in a conflict generated by other sectors. In that sense, we ask the EU institutions, while it is solving this conflict, to explore other avenues to support the affected sectors and compensate the negative effects caused by these additional duties. Wine shall not be used as retaliatory target in unrelated trade disputes” he added.

 

Technical data:

  • With € 3,76 billion in 2018, the US market represented the 33% of the total EU wine exports in value and the 28% in volume.
  • Bottled still wine imports into the US (July 2018 - June 2019):
    • France USD 1200 million
    • Germany USD 94 million
    • Spain USD 200 million
    • UK USD 17 million
  • Customs tariffs before the decision of the US authorities were 0,063 USD/Litre for bottled still wines.

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Note to Editors:

Comité Européen des Entreprises Vins (CEEV – www.ceev.eu) represents the wine companies in the industry and trade in the European Union: still wines, aromatised wines, sparkling wines, liqueur wines and other vine products. It brings together 24 national organisations and its members produce and market the vast majority of quality European wines, with and without a geographical indication, and account for over 90% of European wine exports.