Scotch Whisky is Overtaxed in the UK

March 17, 2014 Taxation in UK

Tax on ScotchEDINBURGH – UK taxpayers believe that the taxes on Scotland’s national drink, Scotch Whisky, are too high, and any further increases of the tax would harm not only the industry, but the national economy as a whole.

Over the weekend the UK based Scotch Whisky Association released the results of their newly conducted survey showing that an estimated 76 percent of respondents in Scotland and 67 percent of in the England believe that the upcoming government hike to the rate of duties on alcohol are too high and should not be enacted.

According to experts of the Association, approximately 79 percent of the retail price of an average bottle of Scotch Whisky in the UK is made up of taxes and duties, and if the duties on alcohol are raised further under the government’s duty escalator system, then the total amount of taxes will account for as much as 81 percent of the shelf price.

Claiming that the current levels of taxation on whisky is already too high, and explaining the importance of maintaining a realistic level of taxation, the chief executive of the Scotch Whisky Association David Frost said, “…an overhaul of the alcohol duty system would support not just the Scotch Whisky industry, but also the wider hospitality industry, which provides employment across the UK.”

The duty escalator system was first introduced in 2008, and requires that the levy applied on the sale of alcohol is raised by a level which is calculated as the rate of national information plus 2 percent.

Photo by: Wade Simmons