In its submission to the consultation over the statutory code it argued that it does not meet either of the two key principles: the principle of fair dealing and the principle that the tied licensee should not be worse off than the free of tie licensee.
The group claims it has concerns over the impact assessment claiming it is based on information supplied by the British Beer & Pub Association and pub owning companies which it considers “flawed, inaccurate and assumptive”.
It claims the pubcos argument that the market rent only option will lead to higher costs for consumers and increase the dominance of the big brewers is not true.
“There is an ongoing misunderstanding of what delivering the ‘prime principle’ as it has been called (that the tied licensees should not be worse off that free of tie licensee) actually means,” it said.
“The consultation documents/impact assessment seems to regard the prime principle and the market rent only/genuine free of tie option as two exclusive things; they are not.”
The submission argues that presenting the market only rent option or free of tie option as separate options is “misleading”.
The APPSPG called it “worrying” that there is an inference that the adjudicator is the mechanism to deliver the prime principal.
The submission said: “What this is suggesting is that even to determine fair rents and fair pricing versus rents, it would be down to the adjudicator. This is impossible as the adjudicator would have to deal with thousands of cases and means that they would be overwhelmed, which is setting up the system to fail.”