BBPA calls for more support for 'struggling' smaller pubs

By Georgina Townshend contact

- Last updated on GMT

Support call: the BBPA has highlighted how 80% of pubs are classified as small businesses as part of its Government inquiry response
Support call: the BBPA has highlighted how 80% of pubs are classified as small businesses as part of its Government inquiry response
The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has called for more support for pubs in response to the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee’s inquiry into small business and productivity.

In its submission the BBPA highlighted that over 80% of pubs were classified as small businesses and called on the Government to provide more support.

“The small business is the engine of the UK economy and pubs are a vital part of so many communities up and down the country," said BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds. 

"Many pubs are struggling under the burden of taxation, from business rates to beer duty, and it is important that the Government looks at ways in which it can best support our vital sector.”

Importance of skills

The organisation emphasised the importance of skills and access to labour for the sector. As such the response highlighted the BBPA’s recent submissions on T-Levels and occupational maps​.

T-Levels seek to provide a practically based, enhanced, technically skilled pathway, rather than the more academic A-Levels.

Occupational maps, which aim to simplify the current apprenticeship system by categorising occupations with similar knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) into 15 maps, will play an important role in developing future apprenticeship programmes for those seeking a career in our sector as well as T-Level qualifications, with more needing to be done in this area.

The BBPA also called for fair treatment of access to finance, which would provide more opportunities for pubs to access investment.

Furthermore, the BBPA’s submission suggested the Government should build on the work carried out by global management consultants McKinsey & Company and subsequently professional services company KPMG to increase productivity in the pub sector.

Barriers

Simmonds added: "Removing barriers is key in supporting small businesses.

"For pubs, the disproportionate business rates burden is a continued barrier to growth and investment, and the response highlights the real need for business rates reform as well as urgent reform of the small brewer duty relief scheme to support growth."

The inquiry will look at what the Government can do to help small businesses improve their productivity, particularly through access to management training, the latest best business practices, and information on the availability of financial support.

It will also look at the issue of late payments to small suppliers and examine the role of the new Small Business Commissioner in tackling deliberate poor treatment of these suppliers by major companies.

The deadline for comments is 22 March 2018.

Related topics: Legislation

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