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US-EU-Britain trade war over American whiskey

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About 50 members of Congress yesterday urged US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai to take action to ensure a 25% tariff cut on US whiskey imposed by the EU and Britain in retaliation for US tariffs in steel and aluminum.

The bipartisan House of Representatives under Democrat John Yarmouth and Republican Andy Barr, representing Kentucky, have warned that the tariffs, first imposed in June 2018, are set to double to 50% by 1 percent. , destroy the successful history of American exports.

"Since the imposition of tariffs, US whiskey exports to the EU have fallen by 37% and to Britain by 53%," the lawmakers wrote.

They said they hoped that the recent agreements to suspend separate tariffs on whiskey over the government subsidy dispute with Boeing Co and Airbus SE aircraft manufacturers should "encourage the withdrawal of all US, European and British tariffs." wines and distillates'.

Lisa Hawkins, a spokeswoman for the Alcoholic Beverages Council, said there are now companies in each US state that face the risk of a greater impact from tariffs.

"US whiskey producers have suffered a lot from these trade disputes, and doubling European tariffs from June 1 will cause irreparable damage to our once-growing exports," she said in an e-mail.

The permanent abolition of the financial burden caused by the tariffs, will support the recovery of restaurants, bars, but also small distillation companies, which were shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic, the MPs wrote.

Tariffs on steel and aluminum have been imposed by the US Department of Commerce under the provisions of a US Cold War trade law.

US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said the tariffs were "effective" in protecting US metal producers, while Tai argued that a global solution to reduce excess steel and aluminum production capacity, which in large part degree focused on China, is necessary to resolve issues in the industry.

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