Scotch and gin exports soar in Singapore
Author: CSEBA / SEEbiz
4th January 2024
SINGAPORE - Scotch whisky exports to Singapore grew by 31% to reach more than £380 million (US$480m) in the 12 months to October 2023. Meanwhile, the category’s exports to Malaysia climbed by 43% to £11m (US$14m).

The government said Singapore is also a major market for the UK gin industry, with the gin and tonic and Singapore Sling serves driving a 56% (£3m/US$3.8m) increase in UK gin exports to the country over the past year.

The government said sales of UK products such as whisky, gin, sparkling wine and chocolate have risen significantly to countries in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) trading bloc.

The UK is set to formally join the bloc this year, which includes 11 countries: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam.

Tariffs of around 80% will be eliminated on UK exports of whisky to Malaysia within 10 years, helping the UK to gain a larger share of the market, the government said last year.

The Scotch Whisky Association’s (SWA) chief executive, Mark Kent, said exports of Scotch to the CPTPP bloc hit more than £1.1 billion (US$1.3bn) in 2022.

He continued: “The UK’s accession to CPTPP will open up new opportunities for Scotch whisky and other UK products in key markets in the region, including the phased elimination of Malaysia’s import tariff.”

According to data from the SWA, Singapore was the third-biggest export market for Scotch by value in 2022. It grew by 50% to £316m (US$399m) in 2022, up from £212m (US$268m) in 2021.

Japan was the ninth-biggest export market by value for Scotch in 2022, up by 32% to £133m (US$168m). It was also the fifth largest by volume, exporting 75m bottles in 2022, an increase of 33%.

Jonathan Brenton, director of public affairs for Pernod Ricard UK, Pernod Ricard Global Travel Retail and Chivas Brothers, added: “The Pacific Rim is already the world’s most economically dynamic region and five CPTPP members are in the top 20 markets for our Scotch whiskies.

“CPTPP will reduce whisky tariffs in Malaysia to zero and will help us leverage the growing middle class and a trend towards premium products and cocktail culture in other Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam.”

Analysis from the government has estimated a £440m (US$555m) benefit for UK alcohol exporters from the removal of trade barriers.

Scotch whisky exports by volume and value declined during the first half of 2023, while gin exports from the UK also dropped by double digits.

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