Scotch Whisky exports decline in first half of 2014
22 Sep 2014
Long term outlook positive but
government support is needed
While Scotch Whisky exports to some key markets, such as France
and Taiwan, increased in the first six months of 2014, the overall
trend was downwards with economic headwinds and uncertainty having
Figures published today (22 September) by the Scotch Whisky
Association (SWA) show that exports of Scotch in the first half of
the year were £1.77 billion, down 11% from £1.99bn in the same
period of 2013. Following a decade of fast growth, the demand for
Scotch is levelling off in some markets. However, there is
confidence in the long-term future of Scotch, with many projects
for new distilleries under way, and up to £2bn of capital
investment in Scotland committed by producers.
There is still increasing demand for Scotch in many
markets. Exports to France grew by 3% to 86 million bottles,
making it the biggest market by volume, and by 6% to £211m to put
it in second place, behind the USA, in terms of value. Exports to
the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were up 26% to £54m, with that area
acting as a distribution hub for parts of Africa, Asia and India.
Australia was up 4% to £37m. Growth of 31% in the difficult
Indian market is particularly welcome and shows the potential
opportunities there. There was growth in several other top 20
markets, notably Taiwan, Canada and Japan.
But there was decline in many major markets in Asia and the
Americas, for example China, Singapore, the US, Brazil and
Mexico. This was due to a mixture of reasons: the
well-documented anti-extravagance measures in China, economic
slowdown in some markets, a stronger pound sterling and
de-stocking. But in all these markets the whisky category
remains popular and the long-term prospects are good.
David Frost, Scotch Whisky Association chief executive, said:
"We are confident that Scotch Whisky will continue to grow in the
long-term as markets stabilise and new ones, such as emerging
economies across Africa, open up. However, it is clear that in the
short-run that there are economic headwinds affecting exports.
"The latest figures also act as a reminder that the success of
Scotch Whisky can't be taken for granted. We need support from
government to beat down trade barriers and help us access new
"That is why we are determined to play a full part in the
forthcoming debate about further devolution, so that it enables a
supportive business environment to ensure the future success of
Notes to editors:
A table is attached with top 20 Scotch Whisky export markets by
value and volume.
With media enquiries please contact Rosemary Gallagher, SWA
communications manager (0131 222 9230/07432 605385 or email firstname.lastname@example.org) or
David Williamson, SWA government & communications director
(07730 496 151 or email email@example.com).