Beer Duty having 'crippling impact' on pub industry

12th December 2012

Campaigners against a rise in Beer Duty say that an above-inflation increase every year is having a crippling effect on the pub industry.

Around 5,800 pubs have already closed and those that continue to exist have lost three million customers because of the increase, according to the Campaign for Real Ale.

Beer Duty increases by two per cent above inflation every year as part of an escalator scheme, but experts say that this is forcing small businesses to shut.

Charlotte Leslie, the Conservative MP, is quoted by the Metro as saying that pubs provide huge community benefits.

"Pubs offer a great network of peers, are a huge employer of young people and they do a huge amount for charity," she noted.

"Every community pub that is lost is a tragedy. We are shooting ourselves in the foot."

The issue was debated in the House of Commons, though the Treasury says the tax makes an "important contribution to tackling Britain's debt crisis".

Posted by Thomas Fletcher

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