Majority of licensees north of border support tax change, survey says
A MAJORITY of Scottish licensees reckon a cut in the VAT rate would have a positive effect on their business, according to a new survey.
The research, commissioned by lobby group the Jacques Borel VAT Club and carried out by independent agency Cardinal Research, surveyed 100 Scottish licensees.
The vast majority of respondents to the survey, 93%, said they would support a reduction in VAT on food and drink sales for pubs and restaurants.
According to the VAT Club, 91% of licensees also believe that a reduction in the VAT rate would allow them to reduce prices and attract more customers.
The Scottish figures were derived from a UK-wide survey of 1003 licensees, in which 96% of respondents agreed that the pub and restaurant industry should campaign for a reduction in the VAT rate.
Licensees contacted for the survey are said to have comprised a mix of free house, leased, tenanted, franchised and managed pubs, with each sector of the trade overwhelmingly supporting the proposed reduction in VAT.
VAT Club founder and chairman Jacques Borel said the findings of the survey show that UK licensees “wholeheartedly” back the campaign to reduce VAT on food and drink in pubs and restaurants to 5%.
The news comes as C&C Group, owner of Tennent’s Lager and Magners, joins the VAT Club.
C&C director Paul Bartlett said it is “important for suppliers like us to support the VAT campaign and show that we are standing side by side with licensees”.