Pubs face closure unless taxes are cut, BBPA warns Osborne

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Pubs face closure unless taxes are cut, BBPA warns Osborne

Related tags: Business rates, Business, Taxation in the united kingdom, Public house

Community pubs could face closure if George Osborne fails to cut the industry's tax bill in this week's Autumn Statement, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has warned.

According to a new report from Oxford Economics, the sector's total tax bill amounts to £7.3bn annually, equivalent to £140,000 for each pub.

But the report argues that pubs are being unfairly hit by business rates, which are calculated based on 2008's trading performance.

As a result Oxford Economics estimates that the industry now pays six times (£600m) more in business rates than it should (£100m) per year.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said the report set out the ‘stark reality’ bearing down on pubs. 

“Without action to reduce this burden, more of our much loved community pubs will be under threat,” she said.

“The Chancellor has taken action on beer duty, and to relieve the burden of business rates on pubs in his previous two Autumn Statements, but there is no doubt that more relief and reform is needed."

Last week the BBPA joined the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers and other trade bodies in writing to the Chancellor .

The group have asked Osborne to extend Small Business Rates Relief and apply Retail Relief­ - a scheme that provides a discount for pubs with a rateable value of £50,000 or less.

The letter said the moves would support the struggling sector ahead of the anticipated rise in costs following the introduction of the National Living Wage and Apprenticeship Levy next year.

Related topics: Business, Pubs & Bars

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