The Pubs Advisory Service described the concerns among tenant groups that Market Rent Only legislation is not having the intended benefits.
Under current legislation, pubcos with more than 500 sites are obliged to offer MRO to tenants, but the PAS is campaigning to reduce the figure.
It suggests pubs are being sold in anticipation of licensees opting for MRO.
Community pubs minister Marcus Jones reflected on the meeting: “I’m keen to understand the range of issues affecting the sector. Clearly the introduction of a statutory Pubs Code is significant at the moment and there are many strong views about it”.
The minister met with representatives of the PAS, Dave Mountford and Simon Clarke.
“I have been pleased to be able to meet and speak to many representatives of the industry to listen to and understand their concerns and views,“ he added.
In a separate claim, the PAS has reported incidents of tied tenants “being coerced, some might say bullied, into swapping their existing leases for short term leases which will deny them the MRO opportunity”.
“The Government’s intention is being subverted and tied tenants are not being offered a 'fair deal' as was anticipated. Instead of working towards a more fruitful relationship with their tied tenants it seems, as before, any time offered to the pubcos to change their ways is being used to seek ways to circumvent the regulation and carry on business as usual,” the PAS stated.
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