BBPA to meet with Chancellor to oppose beer tax hikes

10 February 2009 by
BBPA to meet with Chancellor to oppose beer tax hikes

The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has set up a meeting with the Chancellor ahead of next month's Budget to discuss its opposition to plans to rise beer tax.

The BBPA, along with other pub industry leaders, will meet Alastair Darling and exchequer secretary Angela Eagle before the end of February.

The move came after the BBPA announced that more than 100 MPs have signed up to its campaign calling on the Government to axe plans to increase beer tax in this year's Budget.

Since then, 20,000 people have signed up as supporters and 113 MPs - 50 Labour, 40 Lib Dem and 17 Conservative - have signed an Early Day Motion supporting the aims of the campaign.

Tax on beer rose by 18% last year, while the Government now plans to increase duty even further this April and the following three years by 2% above inflation each year.

Rob Hayward, chief executive of the BBPA, said: "The beer and pub industry is not looking for special favours. But at a time when the rest of the British economy is receiving tax breaks and public subsidies, the Government's planned tax hikes on beer are both unfair and unsustainable.

"The thousands of people who have lobbied their MP over the last few weeks is a clear demonstration of the deep concern and anger felt among landlords, customers and the wider public at what is happening."

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By Daniel Thomas

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