Whisky news from the The Scotch Whisky Association
China to protect Scotch whisky - Move recognises ‘Scotch whisky’ as a product of Scotland- 8th Nov, 2010
08.11.10 - China - an important market for Scotch Whisky – has announced that it will recognise and
protect ‘Scotch Whisky’ as a Geographical Indication (GI).
Scotch Whisky’s registration as a GI in China – recognising Scotch Whisky can only be made in
Scotland - is the culmination of three years of discussions between The Scotch Whisky
Association (SWA) and the Chinese Government.
The announcement was made today at a Ministerial meeting in Beijing between the Rt Hon Dr
Vince Cable MP, the UK Business Secretary, and Mr Zhi Shuping, Minister of China’s General
Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ). The SWA Chief
Executive, Gavin Hewitt, attended today’s meeting as part of the UK business delegation.
The decision ensures the highest levels of protection by China’s enforcement authorities. Local
consumers will be better protected from imitations, while the integrity of Scotch Whisky as a
product made in Scotland is supported.
Chinese officials visited Scotland in 2009 to learn more about how Scotch Whisky is made and
protected. This was followed by technical meetings in Beijing between the SWA, Chinese
Government and British Embassy officials in March 2010.
Speaking in Beijing today, Gavin Hewitt, SWA Chief Executive, said:“The Chinese Government’s strong commitment to protecting consumers of Scotch Whisky from
imitations is welcome. Scotch Whisky’s recognition as a geographical indication is a major step
forward, helping the industry to stop fake products in what is an exciting and growing market.
“The Association’s effort to register Scotch Whisky in China has received excellent support
from the British and Scottish Governments, and the British Embassy in Beijing. Today’s
announcement will help us to develop further this increasingly important market for Scotch
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