US hails win against Philippine alcohol barriers

on 21/12/11 at 1:06 pm

Industry

The United States on Wednesday said it had prevailed in a World Trade Organization dispute with the Philippines over barriers to the Southeast Asian country’s alcohol market that hurt U.S. brands like Jack Daniel’s.

“This is an important victory for American distilled spirits producers and workers,” U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said in a statement.

“We urge the Philippine government to comply swiftly with the (WTO) panel and appellate body findings and eliminate the discriminatory treatment of imported distilled spirits in its market.”

In separate cases filed at the WTO, the European Union and the United States complained that the Philippines had violated global trade rules by taxing foreign alcoholic beverages at rates 10 to 40 times higher than brands made in the Philippines from home-grown materials such as sugar and palm.

The WTO generally bars its members from discriminating between imported and domestic products in their tax regimes.

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