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  • Beer and pub industry welcomes government support package

    20 March 2020

    Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, commented: The Government has been clear that pubs must now shut down. The safety and wellbeing of people is our priority. We stand ready to play our part in the fight against COVID-19 and in the process protecting our communities and employees. As a sector employing nearly one million people, the Chancellor’s support package announced today on staff wages will safeguard thousands of livelihoods and help closed pubs try to get through this difficult period. We stand ready to work with the Government to ensure that the support is accessible as fast as possible. There remain areas where we need further support to sustain our great brewing and pub sector through this difficult time, to ensure that all staff will have jobs to return to and to guarantee all pubs can reopen again when this crisis is over and continue to be at the heart of communities up and down the country.  

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  • Industry warns government has just 24 hours to save thousands of British pubs from closure

    18 March 2020

    The British Beer and Pub Association is calling on the Government for further urgent interventions to keep pubs from closing, amid fears that thousands could collapse this weekend. Despite initial government relief, pubs urgently need liquidity measures in order to pay wages and prevent thousands of pubs from closing, with the subsequent loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs. An open letter to Rishi Sunak from the industry outlines that while the government has offered some initial relief to pubs, the current package does not address the immediate cash flow pressures they are facing. Without immediate and decisive action to create cash and liquidity, thousands of pubs will be unable to pay staff wages and could be forced to close this weekend, before the initial government relief ever reaches them. As a priority, the British Beer and Pub Association is asking that the Government underwrites at least 75% of wages for all pub and brewing staff, enabling employers to pay staff during this period of uncertainty. It is estimated this would cost the government £1billion. In addition, the British Beer and Pub Association is asking for the Government to cancel Excise Duty and VAT payments that pubs are due to pay on 25th March and 31st March respectively. This will enable pub operating companies across the country to redirect much needed cash directly into their businesses, helping to prevent closures and save jobs. The industry is also urging the government to begin immediate distribution of the £10,000 and £25,000 government grants announced on 17 March, or underwrite them, to positively impact pubs’ cash flow. The industry also requires the government to underwrite all insurance costs for business interruption for a period of at least 3 months for the pub sector. This money must be given to insurers now or directly to businesses, to prevent thousands of pubs from closing permanently. British Beer and Pub Association CEO, Emma McClarkin commented, “Pubs are in a crisis today. We need urgent intervention from the Government to prevent a catastrophic number of job losses and the sector damaged beyond repair. We recognise as a sector that we are in unprecedented times. We are prepared to play our part, but whilst we welcome the measures outlined so far by the Government, they do not deal with the immediate cash flow and liquidity crisis our industry faces now’. She continued, ‘As a sector, we stand ready to work with the Government on saving jobs and finding a solution. However, as a sector we cannot stress enough that the Government has just 24 hours to create a pub specific package to prevent irreversible closures and job losses. We have outlined to the Government the rescue package that is needed and stand ready to work with them to make it happen” To view the BBPA's letter to the Chancellor please click here.

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  • BBPA comments on Government advice to avoid pubs

    16 March 2020

    Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, commented: "The severity of the COVID-19 crisis is now impacting on Pubs with devastating effect. The very existence of thousands of pubs and a lot more jobs is now at risk. "The government needs to give clear instructions and detail on the support package to rescue the sector and hundreds of thousands of jobs. "Urgent measures to support cash flows and enable cost reductions is an absolute necessity. Government action now will save thousands of jobs and save our pubs. "Support for pubs now is an investment in the long-term future of communities across the UK without it we risk losing our community assets forever." Please click here to view a letter sent to the Prime Minister by the BBPA.

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  • 'Cheers Chancellor!’ - BBPA welcomes £270m beer duty freeze and business rates support for pubs

    11 March 2020

    Responding to the Chancellor’s Budget, Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, commented: “Pub goers across the UK will be toasting the Chancellor tonight for freezing beer duty. This freeze alone will save pub goers £80 million and secure 2,000 vital jobs across the country. “82% of the beer we drink here is brewed in the UK, so this is a very welcome decision that will help pubs and brewers across the UK. Cheers to the Chancellor! “At the beginning of the year we welcomed the Government’s decision to cut business rates for the UK’s smallest pubs by £1,000. It is great to see the Chancellor listen to our calls to take this one step further by increasing the relief to £5,000 for pubs with a rateable value up to £100,000. “The announcement that pubs with a Rateable Value of £51,000 or less will not pay their rates over the next financial year is an enormous boost. For pubs who already pay little or no business rates, a £3,000 small business relief grant is available, which 14,000 pubs could benefit from. “In total the additional business rates support announced for pubs is worth over £190 million. “Pubs pay 2.8% of rates despite accounting for only 0.5% of rateable turnover across the country. Such reliefs are vital until the fundamentally unfair system is overhauled. We therefore welcome the call for evidence on business rates reform announced today, commencing in the spring. “Following the extensive review into Small Brewer’s Relief, we welcome confirmation that the Government will publish its results in the spring. We hope the Government’s response will recognise the long-standing distortions caused by the current structure, whilst supporting growth among brewers of all sizes. “Overall, this has been a great Budget for pubs, pub goers and Britain’s world-class brewing industry worth £270 million. We hope the Government continues to support our industry in the future, recognising the vital role it plays in our communities and lives across the UK.”

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  • BBPA Beer Barometer – Beer sales grow in 2019 to over 8 BILLION pints

    04 March 2020

    But Beer Duty increase in March 11th Budget would stifle growth, says trade association      Total beer sales increased by 1.1% in 2019 to over 8 billion (8,059,495,997) pints This was growth on top of a strong 2018, which featured the biggest increase in year-on-year beer sales for 45 years A total of 87 million (86,738,882) more pints were sold in 2019 than 2018 The extra number of pints sold in 2019 will have boosted revenue for HM treasury by £57 million However, Government plans to increase Beer Duty could stifle further growth, unless Chancellor Rishi Sunak cuts it in his Budget on March 11th Sales of beer in 2019 were up 1.1% on 2018 to over 8 billion (8,059,495,997) pints, according to the full year 2019 Beer Barometer sales data from the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA). The increase is especially impressive as 2018 had resulted in the biggest year-on-year sales growth for beer in 45 years, with sales up 2.8% in 2018 alone - all aided that year by good weather, a Royal Wedding and the FIFA World Cup. The growth in 2019 equates to an extra 87 million (86,738,882) pints of beer being sold versus 2018. The former Chancellor Philip Hammond’s decision to freeze Beer Duty in his last Budget back in October 2018 appears to have been a key factor in the growth of beer sales in 2019, with the duty freeze coming into place in February 2019. As a result of the price of beer being kept down in 2019, the extra 87 million pints sold in 2019 compared to 2018 will have boosted HMRC’s revenues by £57 million. However, the Government`s planned increase in Beer Duty in the forthcoming Budget will stifle this growth. The new Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has a fantastic opportunity to continue to help the beer and pub sector by going one step further than his predecessor and implementing a modest 2% cut in Beer Duty. Analysis by Oxford Economics shows that a 2% cut in Beer Duty would mean 4,700 more jobs in the sector compared to an RPI increase. It would also show that he has listened to the 255,000 people who have signed the Long Live the Local petition asking him to cut Beer Duty. That is in addition to the 130,000 people so far who have also written to their MP informing them of the importance of their local to their community. With only a week to go until the Budget, MPs have been ramping up the pressure on the Chancellor to cut Beer Duty. Over 50 MPs from all parties and nations of the United Kingdom attended a Westminster Hall debate on taxation on beer and pubs in February, secured by Mike Wood MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group. The debate saw MPs speak in favour of fairer tax on beer to support British brewing and pubs. Furthermore, 85 Conservative Party MPs signed a letter and delivered it to the Chancellor, calling on him to recognise those who have signed the Long Live the Local petition and cut Beer Duty. Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, commented: “Beer sales increasing is clearly good news for our sector. However, this growth will be stifled if the Government goes ahead with its planned increase to Beer Duty on March 11th. “Rishi Sunak has a fantastic opportunity to nurture this growth by cutting Beer Duty in his Budget. Pubs and brewers have an overwhelmingly positive impact not just on the UK economy - supporting 900,000 jobs - but also socially and culturally across the UK, so it’s important the Chancellor actively supports them.” David Cunningham, Programme Director for Long Live the Local, commented: “So far, 255,000 have signed the petition, 130,000 people have written to their MP, and 25,000 publicans are backing the campaign – evidence of just how much they care about their local pubs and breweries. We hope The Chancellor listens to us and responds with a cut in Beer Duty.” Mark Jenkinson, Member of Parliament (MP) for Workington, commented: “As we said in our letter to the Chancellor, the Great British beer and pub industry has for hundreds of years been the pillar of many communities up and down the UK. Beer duty acts as a tax on our pubs and we have written to the Chancellor asking him to cut beer duty. We have welcomed the freeze in recent years; however, a number of MPs now believe more should be done. The Long Live the Local petition has been very popular, and I have first-hand experience of that in Workington constituency. With only a week to go until the Budget, the MPs who signed the letter will continue to make our case heard in Westminster.” Download the full Q4 2019 Beer Barometer spreadsheet here

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  • Unlocking Pubs’ Potential - BBPA welcomes MPs’ report calling on Government to see pubs as solution not problem

    26 February 2020

    The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has today welcomed a new report, published by an influential group of MPs, calling on the Government to recognise pubs’ role in boosting Britain’s economic and social wellbeing. The report, titled “Unlocking Pubs’ Potential”, reveals the findings of an inquiry conducted by the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group – Parliament’s largest cross-party issue group. It recommends that the Government fundamentally reviews business rates for pubs and reduces beer duty, to help boost jobs, tourism and culture and society in the UK. Commenting on the report, Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “This important report rightly recognises that pubs are much more than a place to drink, they’re the heart of the community, bringing us together and enriching our lives. They’re a force for good, putting back into society, creating local jobs and genuine career opportunities. “It’s vital the Government continue to recognise the role pubs play in boosting national wellbeing. That starts with a cut in beer duty and fundamentally overhauling business rates to help keep community locals open. It’s now on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to listen to these calls and deliver a Budget that helps pubs.”

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