New Zealand distilled spirits and liqueurs exports earned $38m in the year to June 2005, down 16% on last year according to figures released by the Government statistician last week.
Falling 8% in volume to 8.2 million litres and 16% in value, the decline is partly due to the strong New Zealand dollar says chief executive of the Distilled Spirits Association*, Thomas Chin.
“The results reveal a less than stellar performance for the industry however the disappointing outcome can be attributed to several factors including the high value of the New Zealand dollar and excessive trade barriers and tariffs,“ Mr Chin said.
Mr Chin said New Zealand exporters urgently needed to see multilateral progress at the World Trade Organisation as new trading rules on tariffs and market access would benefit New Zealand and all world trade.
“Trade is our lifeblood and tariff cuts on internationally traded spirits would enable more consumers to enjoy our products,” Mr Chin said.
The spirits industry is hopeful that with another New Zealander - Crawford Falconer - leading the important agricultural negotiations, the World Trade Organisation members will achieve a successful conclusion at the Doha Development Round in 2006.
New Zealand’s major spirits exports are
gin, vodka, liqueurs and Ready to Drink beverages (RTDs),
which are sent to more than 30 different countries around
the world with our key markets being Australia, North and
South Asia and the Pacific.