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France (Alcoholic Beverages)

Volume 33: debated on Monday 6 December 1982

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asked the Minister for Trade whether he will outline the representations which he has made to the Government of France regarding their new law applying a discriminatory levy on alcoholic beverages above 25 per cent. volume; and whether he is considering any retaliatory action on French exports of alcohol below 25 per cent. volume to the United Kingdom.

[pursuant to the reply, 2 December 1982, c. 240]: The levy which the French Government are considering charging on alcoholic beverages above 25 per cent. volume will apply equally to domestically produced and imported spirits. I understand that the European Commission has sought details from the French Government. If the proposed change appears to be in breach of the Treaty of Rome, it will be for the Commission to take appropriate action. Her Majesty's Government would fully support any such action.