Business rates

Business rates are a major cost to pubs, who pay a disproportionate amount compared to other sectors. In April 2017 there was a revaluation of rates across the UK, with many pubs seeing further significant increases. We believe major reform is required and until that point additional relief should be given specifically for pubs.

  • BBPA meets with HM Treasury ahead of Budget

    18 October 2021

    Trade association makes case for cutting Beer Duty, Business Rates and VAT so sector can lead levelling up agenda The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has today met with HM Treasury officials to make representations for the brewing and pub sector ahead of the Budget on October 27th. In its meeting with HM Treasury, the BBPA highlighted the vital role pubs and brewing play in supporting over 900,000 jobs in communities across the UK and contributing £26 billion to the UK economy across towns, villages and cities. It made the case that if the Government is serious about Building Back Better and Levelling up, it must invest in pubs and brewers who have a leading role to play in the recovery as they come through the pandemic and continue their world-leading status. To achieve this, the BBPA underlined in the meeting the importance of co-investment from Government in the sector in the form of a fairer tax burden and more level playing field with other European nations post-Brexit. It made the case for its three key Budget asks: cutting beer duty overall, extending business rates relief and permanently lowering VAT for all food and drink sold in pubs. In concluding the meeting, it emphasised with HM Treasury officials that investment from the Government will enable the beer and pub sector to drive a jobs-rich recovery, whilst ensuring a pint in a pub remains an affordable pleasure.   Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “As we count down the days to the Budget, it was very productive holding a meeting with HM Treasury to further make the case for investment in our sector in the form of fairer taxation. “Investing in our brewers and pubs is investing in our communities and society to build back better. In return we will create jobs, boost the local economy and help our communities reconnect and unite again. “If the Government is serious about levelling up, it must get serious about reducing the tax burdens on our sector.”

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  • Pubs overpay on Business Rates by £570 million, says BBPA

    24 August 2021

    Trade association says ‘radical’ overhaul of rates system needed post-COVID in consultation with Treasury  The British Beer & Pub Association, the leading trade association representing brewers and pubs, has today revealed that pubs overpay their fair share of Business Rates by £570 million a year. According to the trade association, the pub sector in the UK pays 2.5% of all business rates, despite accounting for just 0.5% of rateable turnover – causing it to overpay £570 million. To aid the recovery of pubs post-COVID, who were forced to close during three separate lockdowns and still operate under heavy restrictions until recently, the BBPA is urging the Government to radically overhaul the Business Rates system. The call from the trade association comes as it responded today to HM Treasury’s consultation on Business Rates revaluations, and in particular revaluating Business Rates every three years. According to the BBPA in its response to the consultation, the multiplier (the rate in the pound that is then multiplied by the rateable value of a property to produce its annual rates bill) has increased to a ‘staggering’ 51.2p today from 34.8p in the early 90s. The BBPA therefore welcomes the Government’s aim to provide more regular revaluations for pubs in principle in the hope it will result in fairer rates for pubs due to more regular re-evaluations. However, it has concerns that the proposed changes to the current system of re-evaluations will mean rates payers have to pay in order to access a better and more transparent tax regime, which is irresponsible. Ultimately, the Business Rates regime needs radical change, which is why the BBPA is backing the Long Live The Local campaign, which is calling for Government investment in pubs by reforming Business Rates, in addition to VAT and Beer Duty.   A British Beer & Pub Association spokesperson said: “As things stand, pubs will overpay on Business Rates to the tune of £570 million a year. The bill for this will come through the post once the current relief on Business Rates ends in March 2022. “Pubs overpaying on their business rates is fundamentally wrong. Especially as they were one of the most affected sectors by Covid and lockdowns. The Government should be supporting pubs’ recovery, not punishing them. “As our sector begins its recovery, now is the time for radical reform of Business Rates. “While increasing the number of Business Rates revaluations to every three years would be helpful in principle, the proposals from Treasury would mean rate payers have to pay in order to access a better tax regime, which isn’t right. “Root and branch reform of Business Rates is essential to the future of our sector, which is why we are supporting the Long Live The Local campaign calling for reform of Business Rates in addition to reforming VAT and Beer Duty.”

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