A Battle Royal?

Whatever may be true, a new era of whiskey war may be in the offing

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A Battle Royal?

By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser
3 June 2018

With the U.S. announcing substantial duties on imports of steel and aluminum products from Canada, Europe, and Mexico, some nerves are getting a bit frayed.

Counter-duties on similar and other goods imported from the U.S. are being bandied about.

This nascent trade war may just be a negotiating tactic in the (currently on hold ?) negotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the like.  Still, they are bound to increase prices to consumers on either side of each issue. The only winners of such new levies would be the respective governments that levy such new “import taxes.” Let’s look at two items on the list of duties and counter-veiling duties.

Aluminum: Let’s look at the worldwide aluminum production in 2016

In 2017, the U.S. imported approximately 7,000 tons of aluminum and exported nearly 3,000 tons for a net import of 4,000 tons. As the table nearby shows, U.S. aluminum production amounted to less than 1,000 tons in the same period.

Bulk commodities like aluminum ingots, bars, sheets, and scrap (from beverage cans, etc.) are traded on the world markets at competitive prices. Even if the U.S. were getting all its imported aluminum from large producers other than Canada, the cost would hardly be any different. Any quick expansion of its own production would not be possible either.

Therefore:  Cui Bono – Who’s getting the benefit of any import duty?

But now, Canada is really getting serious in reciprocating with a proposed duty on – would you have guessed it – U.S. whiskey.

Whiskey

Yes, this trade spat is getting to be really serious now. Aluminum or steel are one thing but whisk(e)y, that’s where the fun stops!  That ought to be a major blow to the shine distillers in the hills of Tennessee or the flatlands of Indiana. Of course, Scotland is the biggest producer of whiskey in the world, and has been for at least 100 years (https://www.whiskyinvestdirect.com/about-whisky/world-whiskies ).

Actually, with Canada producing a variety of world-renowned products of that kind, like Crown Royal, one wonders how much influence this proposed duty could actually achieve. The website at BuildABasket describes it as follows:

A medium bodied whisky, with enough mouthfeel to be enjoyed on its own but also light enough for mixing. On the palate, a slight sherried sweetness is in evidence, with vanilla, caramel, brown sugar and a nice oakiness to round out the flavor profile before a hint of rye spiciness passes over the palate. If you enjoy a smooth, sipping whisky with just the right amount of bite, Crown Royal delivers. Crown is an elegant Canadian whisky and it’s readily apparent why Crown drinkers are such a devoted group.

Remember the time of Prohibition (1919-1933)? That’s when contraband and illegal whiskey “flowed” in great quantities from Canada across the Detroit River into the U.S.  Characters like Al Capone (1899-1947) became very rich in the process. Actually, some folks claim that there are still wagon loads of Canadian whiskey at the bottom of the river. Regrettably, I never encountered such while taking water and sediment samples there a few decades ago.

Whatever may be true, a new era of whiskey war may be in the offing.
Can a new (in-reverse-type) whiskey smuggling ring be far behind?

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Dr Klaus L E KaiserDr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser is a professional scientist with a Ph.D. in chemistry from the Technical University, Munich, Germany. He has worked as a research scientist and project chief at Environment Canada‘s Canada Centre for Inland Waters for over 30 years and is currently Director of Research at TerraBase Inc. He is author of nearly 300 publications in scientific journals, government and agency reports, books, computer programs, trade magazines, and newspaper articles.

Dr. Kaiser has been president of the International Association for Great Lakes Research, a peer reviewer of numerous scientific papers for several journals, Editor-in-Chief of the Water Quality Research Journal of Canada for nearly a decade, and an adjunct professor. He has contributed to a variety of scientific projects and reports and has made many presentations at national and international conferences.

Dr. Kaiser is author of CONVENIENT MYTHS, the green revolution – perceptions, politics, and facts
convenientmyths.com

Dr. Kaiser can be reached at: mail@convenientmyths.com

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June 3, 2018 at 01:37PM

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