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Mini Budget 2022: Tax increase on beer, wine and spirits axed

Rebecca Goodman
Written By:
Rebecca Goodman

A planned increase to the duty charged on beer, wine and spirits is to be cancelled, Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng confirmed in today’s mini Budget.

Kwarteng said alcohol duty on alcohol would be frozen from 1 February 2023 to provide additional support to this sector.

The move is expected to save consumers 7p on a pint of beer, 4p on a pint of cider, 38p on a bottle of wine and £1.35 on a bottle of spirits, according to the Treasury.

It is also expected to save £600m and give a much-needed boost to the hospitality sector which was severely impacted by the pandemic.

The Chancellor also announced an 18-month transitional measure for wine duty and extended draught relief to cover smaller kegs of 20 litres and above, to help smaller breweries.

Boost for independent shops

Martin McTague, National Chair of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), said: “We’re pleased that the planned reforms of alcohol duty have been scrapped.

“The complexity of the planned changes to alcohol duty announced earlier this year would have meant that small retailers would have had to calculate many different levels of duty based on alcohol levels, which would be very challenging to administer and properly account for.

“The news that the current system will be retained is therefore helpful and will not put small independent wine and beer shops at a disadvantage compared to larger rivals with more sophisticated systems, as would otherwise have happened.”

It was also announced that reforms to modernise alcohol duties are being moved forward and the government is due to publish a consultation on these plans.