Proposed tariffs could double the price you pay for imported wine


(WTNH) — Your favorite bottle of imported wine might get a little bit pricier.

New proposed and imposed tariffs have wine sellers — and drinkers — on edge.

It all started back in October when the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced a 25% tariff on several items, including specific wines from Europe, in retaliation for the subsidies, Europe provided to aircraft maker Airbus. 

In December, it was proposed to raise tariffs up to 100% on French sparkling wine, including Champagne.

The proposal was in response to the French digital services tax, which, a USTR investigation concluded, “discriminates against U.S. digital companies, such as Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon,” Wall Street Journal reports.

On Dec. 12, 2019, the USTR said it could expand the October tariff to include additional products, like French sparkling wine and champagne, and put levies of as high as 100% on nearly all European wines.

If these tariffs go into effect, the price of imported wine could double in the United States or not be available at all.

That could result in revenue loss and business closures for wine, liquor, restaurant, bar, hospitality, entertainment, importing and shipping industries. It could also trickle down to city and state governments. 

Wine lovers still have a chance to voice their opinions. They can leave a comment on the U.S. Trade Representative website under the Enforcement of U.S. WTO Rights in Large Civil Aircraft Dispute, or they can email their local state representative or senator.

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