Coopers, Lion and Carlton & United Breweries have called on the Australian government to incentivise patrons back to the pub by making beer more affordable at licensed venues around the country.
Brewers Association of Australia (BAA) Chair Peter Filipovic said: “We need to make a beer at the pub more affordable. It is as simple as that.
“A cut, or at the very least, a freezing of excise will give hospitality businesses a chance to get back on their feet as beer is the most consumed alcoholic beverage in Australia’s licensed venues.”
Australians pay the fourth highest beer tax in the industrialised world, and with 85 per cent of all beer sold in Australia being made in Australia, it is a significant driver of economic activity and domestic jobs.
To support the recovery of the hospitality sector in a COVID-safe world, Filipovic said:
“We have endured the total closure of the hospitality sector this year, which saw 440,000 Australians lose their jobs.
“While some of those jobs have returned as most governments have eased restrictions, the road to recovery for hospitality will be long and full of challenges…there is a risk that COVID-19 will have caused permanent behaviour change meaning there is a reticence to gather in pubs and clubs.”
BAA urges the Government to support the Australian brewing industry and hospitality businesses by cutting beer excise, or at the very least, freezing it.
Brewers also recommend:
• a domestic tourism package appropriately tailored to assist Australia’s hospitality sector;
• a continuation of JobKeeper and
• that government decisions materially impacting the industry are considered by the whole of government. To ensure this occurs across all jurisdictions consideration should be given to the matter by the National Federation Reform Council.
The federal government will hand down its 2020/21 budget on Tuesday, 6 October.