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Beer Duty / 10 December 2012

Brits pay more in beer tax than most of Europe – combined

Brits pay more in Beer Tax than in 16 major European countries put together, says a new analysis by the British Beer & Pub Association, published yesterday in The Sun on Sunday newspaper.

Following years of swingeing increases, the Beer Tax bill across a huge swathe of Europe – from, Portugal to Hungary, and including Germany, France, Italy and Spain – is less than in the UK. This highlights the pressing need for a review of the controversial beer tax escalator, which has seen the UK tax bill rise by 42 per cent since March 2008, says the British Beer & Pub Association.

UK beer duty is now so high that beer drinkers in London and the South East pay as much as Germany. Northern Ireland pays the same as Portugal, despite being tiny in comparison. And the North East pays more beer tax than the world’s biggest (per capita) beer drinking nation, the Czech Republic.

Brigid Simmonds, BBPA Chief Executive, comments:

“The scale of UK beer tax compared with our near neighbours shows that the Government’s tax policy does not make sense. With more sustainable levels of taxation, we could be creating jobs, and UK brewing would be a bigger manufacturing success story. We need a review now of this policy, as Parliament has rightly requested.”

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