The Scotch whisky trademark has been renewed in China for a decade to protect it from locally-produced counterfeit bottles.
The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) said the Far East is a key market, with 25 bottles of Scotch exported to China every minute. The SWA has worked with the British Embassy and Chinese authorities to crack down on about 200 locally-produced spirits falsely described as “Scotch”, some of which have their own trademarks featuring Scottish words and images which companies have applied to for use on Chinese-made products.
A trademark agreement was first made in 2008 and has now been extended until 2028.
The announcement was made as SWA chief executive Karen Betts joined prime minister Theresa May on a three-day trade visit to China.
Ms Betts said: “The renewal of the ‘Scotch whisky’ trademark is an important step in securing future growth for the world’s leading high-quality spirit drink in China, the world’s largest spirits market.”
International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox said: “I am pleased to be in China with the Prime Minister and a diverse contingent of innovative British businesses to promote our exports and attract Chinese investment into the UK.
“China is a key market for British goods and services with exports increasing by 25 per cent over the last year to more than £59 billion.”