DISCUS

DISTILLED SPIRITS COUNCIL "STRONGLY OPPOSES" UK LIQUOR TAX STAMP PLAN -- Members of Parliament Told During DC Visit

March 28, 2004 07:00 PM
Washington, D.C. – The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States today told visiting members of the British Parliament it strongly opposes a U.K. government proposal to institute tax stamps on distilled spirits products sold there. “Tax stamps are costly, inefficient, and an ineffective means of addressing tax evasion,” said Council President and CEO Peter H. Cressy. “We join our colleagues at the Scotch Whisky Association—and the rest of the global spirits industry—in strongly opposing this ill-advised measure.” Cressy noted that the U.S. eliminated tax stamps—the small paper labels that were affixed across the tops of bottles in the post-prohibition era—nearly twenty years ago, and other countries have followed suit or declined to adopt them. “It is baffling that the British government—contrary to the advice of its own best experts— would seek a nineteenth century solution to a perceived problem in a 21st century economy,” Cressy told the members of Parliament. “Further, at a time when the World Spirits Alliance has agreed on a policy of elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers to global free trade in spirits, this plan represents a serious trade impediment.” The members of Parliament who are in Washington investigating the American position on tax stamps include: Mrs. Irene Adams, Chair, Select Committee on Scottish Affairs; Mr. John Lyons; Ms. Ann McKechin; and Mr. Michael Weir. They are slated to meet with Federal regulators at the Treasury Department’s Tax and Trade Bureau and with industry representatives at the Distilled Spirits Council. The Council also released its five-page, March 5th letter to the British government outlining its opposition to the tax stamp plan. The organization has worked closely with the Edinburgh-based Scotch Whisky Association on both the issue and in facilitating the visit. CONTACT: Frank Coleman or Lisa Hawkins Telephone: 202-682-8840 SCROLLER Publication Name: Publication Author:
 

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