The BBPA has today written to the five remaining candidates of the leadership race setting out the measures that must be implemented to save pubs and allow this vitally important sector to thrive at the heart of communities across the country.
The letter urges any new leader to:
- Rebalance the UK’s alcohol duty system to support UK pubs and brewers
- Reduce the disproportionate tax burden on the hospitality sector
- Extend the energy price cap to small businesses and supply to join residential and commercial properties
As the sector emerges from the pandemic it continues to face major headwinds and obstacles that threaten some of the 900,000 jobs that pubs and brewing provide up and down the country. The recent jump in energy prices which has seen pub energy bills rise by 150% in some instances, leading only 1 in 3 businesses to be profitable in recent months.
Alongside this, record inflation, labour shortages and the disproportionately high tax burden placed upon UK beer and pubs threaten the recovery of the industry. Research by Oxford Economics shows that around 800 pubs closed permanently during the pandemic. To turn this around the new Prime Minister must implement the steps set out the Manifesto for Beer and Pubs.
Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “The Beer and Pub industry showed its resilience, grit and innovation during the pandemic and we welcomed the support measures put in place by the Government. However, record levels of inflation, lack of access to workforce, soaring energy prices and unfair tax burdens are stifling the recovery of the sector
“Our sector delivers jobs and huge economic value to every part of the UK and we sit at the heart of our communities, for the sector to recover, it is crucial we get support to help it recover and return to sustainable growth.
“I urge whoever the new Prime Minister is, to follow measures outlined in this manifesto and help pubs and brewers to thrive in coming years. Doing so will create more connected and vibrant communities, support jobs and drive local economic growth in every part of the United Kingdom.”