Bootlegging lobby turns up the heat

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Independent family brewers, United kingdom

The Independent Family Brewers of Britain (IFBB) has stepped up lobbying efforts to persuade ministers to lower duty levels in order to end...

The Independent Family Brewers of Britain (IFBB) has stepped up lobbying efforts to persuade ministers to lower duty levels in order to end bootlegging.

In the run up to the Chancellor's pre-Budget speech, expected at the end of the month, Stuart Neame, vice chairman of Kent brewer Shepherd Neame, addressed a meeting of MPs at the Labour Party Conference.

He asked the Government to lower duty to cut profits for organised gangs of bootleggers in order to stop the illegal trade in alcohol from the continent.

Around 250 delegates listened to the speech. Mr Neame said: "It was heartening that there was almost a cheer when I mentioned uneven duty levels across Europe." But he added that the Treasury was now the trade's main stumbling block when it came to putting its argument for lower duty.

"I think the IFBB has been very successful in getting our position across to the majority of Labour MPs. The problem is the Treasury has its own agenda - it needs to maintain its revenues, and we're a soft touch."

Related topics: Legislation

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