MP urges freeze on beer tax

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Liberal Democrat MP Dan Rogerson has called for the Government to lift the tax burden on Cornish pubs and breweries.

The North Cornwall MP has raised concerns with the Treasury about its planned 5% increase in duty on beer, set to take effect this month.

Rogerson, who is vice chair of the cross-party Parliamentary Beer Group, has written to the Chancellor George Osborne to raise his concerns about the tax increase ahead of the Budget later in the month.

He has also co-sponsored of a House of Commons motion urging the Government to freeze the beer tax, in order to save jobs and keep pub-going affordable.

Pubs and breweries employ around 2,100 people in north Cornwall providing around £23.8 million in wages for the area, according to a recent Oxford Economics report commissioned by the British Beer and Pub Association.

Rogerson said: “We already know how important local pubs are to communities in Cornwall. These latest figures show how vital pubs and breweries are to our economy too, providing hundreds of jobs, especially for our young people.

“The British Beer and Pub Association, the Society of Independent Brewers and the Campaign for Real Ale have all united to urge the Government to think again about the beer duty escalator which are set to increase taxes later this month.

“We need to make sure that going to the pub remains affordable in order to protect jobs and stop the closure of good local pubs.”