Aspirational Chinese help boost Scotch whisky exports to Asia by 32%



2015-06-26 12:21:42

Aspirational Chinese help boost Scotch whisky exports to Asia by 32%

Scotch exports to Asia totalled $1167m in 2010 as whisky becomes the drink to be seen with

While the US remains the largest consumer of Scotch whisky, the growing wealth of Asian countries is helping to close the gap.

Figures released by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) show sales to Asia last year increased by 32% to 716m, boosted by growing demand from the leading economic powers in the region.

South Korea increased its Scotch imports by 36% to 153m in 2010, following a difficult 2009.

Exports to India grew by 46% to 41m but it is the potential of China that is exciting commentators the most.

 Whisky from Jura is proving popular in Asia

Exports to China rose by 24% to 55m and the association believes that sales will double over the next five years.

The idea is given credence by the fact that China is now the world's second largest economy, having grown by more than 10% last year.

The status of whisky among investors is one factor put forward for the liquor's emergence in China, where, according to data from the Hurun Research Institute, there are more than 960,000 millionaires.

Ian Logan, an international brand ambassador for Glenlivet, told the Guardian that whisky is "one of the most aspirational drinks in the world.

"In lots of countries, it's a sign that you've made it, and you want to share that, and show it."

In November 2009 Bonhams became the first auction house to hold a whisky sale in Asia, when all 150 rare single malt whiskies sold for a combined $609,990 at its Hong Kong event.

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Image: Steve Partridge

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