Amendment of the Law

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:13 pm on 8th March 2017.

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Photo of Alistair Carmichael Alistair Carmichael Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 5:13 pm, 8th March 2017

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Spirits duty is being increased by 3.9%, which has already been rightly condemned by the Scotch Whisky Association. Not only will that affect an enormously important manufacturing sector for my constituency and for the Scottish and UK economies, but the effect will go beyond Scotch whisky. When I was first elected to the House in 2001, my constituency had what would be called one and a half whisky distilleries. We now have two full-time whisky distilleries and three gin distilleries. [Laughter.] I am not claiming responsibility or credit for that, but we all know that the market supplies when demand increases. The point is that that is typical of many areas of the country. It is a growth area with small, growing businesses that deserve support; they do not need to be clobbered in this way.