UK & Japan: Free-trade agreement to give more generous market access for UK malt
The UK government announced on September 11 that the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement had been agreed in principle by the two parties. As the agreements are yet to be ratified, detailed text isnt currently available about the exact nature of the deal, however there have been some headline announcements revealed by the UK government.
Among others, the agreement will give more generous market access for UK malt producers Japan has guaranteed market access for UK malt exports under an existing quota which is more generous and easier to access than the EU quota.
The UK is the second biggest exporter of malt to Japan, with UK producers exporting £37 mln there each year.
Malting exports to Japan are a key market for the UK. Under the EU deal the UK has access to an 187,500 tonnes tariff free quota. Malt exports fluctuate from year to year depending on availability. Japan imports around 500,000 tonnes of malt per year and the UK is already a major supplier. UK exports of malt to Japan averaged around 75,000 tonnes in the last three years.
Whisky is also a major export for the UK, with exports of spirits growing significantly year on year. UK producers will be hoping to capitalise on increased malt demand, both from Japanese based distillers producing their own whisky as well as increased demand for UK produced whisky.
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