PMA gets behind beer duty cut campaign

By Mike Berry

- Last updated on GMT

PMA gets behind beer duty cut campaign

Related tags: Beer duty, Alcoholic beverage

PMA readers have been urged to join the campaign for a fourth successive cut in beer duty in March’s Budget.

Lobbying efforts are underway in a bid to secure another cut, with the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA), Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) and Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) writing to MPs asking for their support ahead of Chancellor George Osborne’s budget. As it stands, duty is set to increase by the RPI measure of inflation.

The BBPA says that strong public and trade support has had a big impact on previous campaigns and wants licensees and their customers to get involved once again.

British Beer and Pub Association chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “PMA readers have always made a huge difference to the campaign for lower beer taxes, so it’s great if readers get involved.”

Figures produced for the BBPA showed that the scrapping of the beer duty escalator in 2013 and a hat-trick of cuts secured an estimated 19,000 jobs across the brewing and pubs sector. Beer is now 20p cheaper than it would have been if the Government had continued with previous tax-raising policy.

But, after many years of above-inflation duty increases, beer is still overtaxed and, along with other taxes, is putting pubs under pressure. British drinkers pay nearly 40% of all EU beer duty but only consume around 12% of the beer.

With beer accounting for seven in every 10 drinks sold in pubs, another duty cut would help support pub businesses by keeping a pint affordable and encourage people to drink a British-made product.

Get involved and show your support

The website www.beerandpubjobs.co.uk​ provides an ‘email your MP’ tool, where by entering your postcode, licensees can send a message to their local MP calling for another duty cut.

The site also provides a range of local data where campaigners can access figures on the positive impact of beer and pubs on jobs and their local economy.

“With our email tool, joining the campaign for a fourth cut in beer duty only takes a few seconds. I hope as many people as possible visit the website and send a message to their MP. There is also a huge amount of local information available that clearly shows how important beer and pubs are to our economy, in every part of Britain,” said Simmonds.

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