The cellar master checks the quality of an aged Armagnac at the Chateau Laubade, in Sorbets, near … [+] Eauze, in the department of the Gers, south western France, on February 9, 2021. – The American surtax of 25% on Armagnac is difficult to accept for the exporters of this French liquor. Since January 12, 2021, the United States, under Donald Trump’s administration, has imposed this new tax which, for example, makes the price of a bottle of Armagnac jump from 100 to 125 dollars, a tax that already affects wines since October 2019, but not Champagne. (Photo by GEORGES GOBET / AFP) (Photo by GEORGES GOBET/AFP via Getty Images)
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The global pandemic and a trade war with the U.S. delivered a one-two punch to France’s wine and spirits industry in 2020. According to the Federation of Wine and Spirits Exporters (FEVS), exports fell 13.9% last year as the industry hopes a new presidential administration will deliver some relief.
The industry reported €12.1 billion in exports in 2020, dropping to levels last seen in 2016. Champagne continued to be one of the hardest-hit sectors as sales dropped 18% by volume.
Under the Trump administration, an ongoing trade dispute involving aeronautics giants Boeing and Airbus escalated as additional tariffs were imposed on unrelated sectors such as wine and spirits…