Statutory code: Government fears 'unpredictable' impact of free-of-tie option

By John Harrington

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Mandatory free-of-tie option, Government, Public house, Tenant

Statutory code: Government fears 'unpredictable' impact of free-of-tie option
The Government has chosen not to introduce a mandatory free-of-tie option into the tenanted pub sector over fears that it could “undermine the tied model” and have an “unpredictable” impact on the wider industry, a minister has told Parliament.

Last month the Government announced plans to introduce a statutory code into the sector supported by a code adjudicator, but stopped short of introducing a mandatory free-of-tie option favoured by some campaigners.

Asked about the issue in Parliament, business minister Jo Swinson said: “The Government recognises that some tenant groups and campaigners support this option, which might appear to offer a simple way of ensuring that tied tenants are no worse off than free-of-tie tenants. We looked carefully at this measure but have decided not to introduce it.


“The responses to the Government’s consultation on a statutory code and adjudicator for the pubs sector raised concerns that mandatory free-of-tie would create uncertainty for pub-owning companies and have an unpredictable impact on the wider pubs sector which could even undermine the tied model.

"Even among the polarised views in the industry, there is strong support for the tie as a business model.

“What is important to the Government is that there are protections in place so that the tied model operates fairly. The reforms being taken forward in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill [including the statutory code proposals] will rebalance the relationship between pub-owning companies and their tied tenants, without threatening the balance of the wider industry.”

Related topics: Legislation

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1 comment

typical of the goverment

Posted by andy ashworth,

just what we need the government siding one the top dogs side yet again
£40-50 a tub is fair on us licensees is it ?????? why do we make these options to better our life`s when we just get shot in the foot
this country don't fight fair for the working person we get squeezed by every 1 with rules and regs but no 1 will stand for us what is the point we might all as well give up ......rant over

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