Duty increases ‘could cost 75,000 jobs’
Published:  25 February, 2009

Drinks industry leaders have warned that up to 75,000 jobs could be lost if the government presses ahead with plans to increase alcohol taxes over the next four years.

The forecast comes in research by Oxford Economics contained in a joint Budget submission to the Treasury by major drinks trade associations.

The study suggests that over the next five years retail prices of alcohol would go up by 17% and sales would fall by 11%.

Tax revenue would be £1.6 billion lower than original Treasury estimates.

A spokesman for the trade associations said: “We urge the government to reconsider before it is too late for thousands of wage earners and their families.

“Our industry is being hit just as hard as any other UK manufacturing and retail sector.

“We are not asking for handout. We only ask the Chancellor to abandon further tax increases which will force more job losses.”

The submission is being made by the Wine & Spirit Trade Association, the Scotch Whisky Association, the British Beer & Pub Association, the Gin & Vodka Association and the National Association of Cider Makers

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