National Off-Licence Association opposes introduction of off-licence levy

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The National Off-Licence Association (Noffla) has said it is against any additional taxes being imposed on the independent off-licence sector.

Noffla was responding to Fianna Fail’s call to introduce a 7.5oc tax on off-licence alcohol sales.

“Noffla strongly opposes any additional taxes being imposed on the independent off-licence sector,” said Noffla chairperson Evelyn Jones.

“This move has the potential to put the independent off-licence sector, which is already a fragile and vulnerable sector, out of business overnight. There is absolutely no way that the independent sector could sustain such a tax.

“In Fianna Fáil’s pre-budget submission, they also called for a 10pc tax to be introduced on off-licences. This is an extremely ill thought out proposal, with little consideration being about the impact or consequences it would have on countless small businesses across Ireland. This move would lead to significant job losses.

“There has been a significant shift in alcohol sales to the off-trade; however this has not benefited the independent off-licence sector. In the last four years, we have lost almost 3,000 jobs in this sector and witnessed 80 business closures. There have been three closures since January 2013 alone and we expect another 20 to 30 to close next year.”