Budget 2015: Boozers set for a boost with cuts to beer, cider and Scotch duties

Adam Hignett
A trip to the local could become cheaper for Britons, after beer duty was cut yesterday (Source: Corbis)

ain's publicans raised a toast after further cuts to alcohol duties were announced in the 2015 Budget.

With 1p off a pint and two per cent off cider duty, it marks the third year in a row duties have been cut. However, Britain’s budding wine growers will be disappointed as their duty was frozen.

Ernst and Young said previous reductions had helped lead to the first year-on-year increase in beer sales for a decade, with similar results deriving from the latest cut.

In a sign Scotland is better off in the Union, it was also announced there would be a two per cent cut to duty on Scotch.

The British pub association lauded the chancellor as a “Hat Trick Hero”, estimating the cuts would boost employment by 3,800 this year and put £180m in the pockets of regular pub patrons.

The treasury expects the reduction in duties will cost £1.5bn over the next five years.

However, charity group Alcohol Concern estimated the final bill for the UK taxpayer will be £21bn from the costs of abuse.

David Forde, managing director of Heineken called it a “momentous result” for the industry.

Wetherspoons and Greene King shares rose on the news, rising one and 1.5 per cent respectively.

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