World Europe 18 May 2017 Boris Johnson angers ...

Boris Johnson angers sikh with whisky talk

Published May 18, 2017, 1:11 am IST
Updated May 18, 2017, 1:11 am IST
Boris Johnson (Photo: AP)
 Boris Johnson (Photo: AP)

Foreign secretary Boris Johnson had a tough time on Wednesday on the election campaign trail when a British Sikh woman admonished him for talking about whisky during a stop at a gurdwara in the city of Bristol.

Mr Johnson, whose wife is of Sikh origin, was forced to apologise for raising the issue of high tariffs on Scotch whisky imports into India, which could be brought down if a free trade deal is struck between India and the UK post- Brexit.

“He was simply making the point that a free trade deal with, for example, India could be huge for both sides,” said a spokesperson for the senior Cabinet minister.

“Mr Johnson pointed out that in India billions of litres of whisky are consumed every year but there is a 120 percent (customs duty) on imports of Scotch whisky and wouldn’t it be great if we could have free trade.

“One lady expressed her views based on a personal situation but the other 30 attendees warmly welcomed his remarks. He said he was sorry to hear of her personal story but that was all,” he said.



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