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BBPA calls for more support for small businesses

The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has responded to the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee’s Inquiry into small business and productivity. In the submission the BBPA highlight that over 80% of pubs are classified as small businesses and called on the Government to provide more support.

As the leading voice for pubs and breweries the BBPA emphasised the importance of skills and access to labour for the sector. As such the response highlighted the BBPA’s recent submissions on T-Levels and occupational maps. T-Levels seek to provide a practically based, enhanced, technically skilled pathway, rather than the more academic A-Levels.

Occupational maps, which aim to simplify the current apprenticeship system by categorising occupations with similar knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) into 15 maps, will play an important role in developing future apprenticeship programmes for those seeking a career in our sector as well as T-Level qualifications and more needs to be done in this area.

The BBPA also called for fair treatment of access to finance, which would provide more opportunities for pubs to access investment. Furthermore, the BBPA’s submission suggested the Government should build on the work carried out by McKinsey and subsequently KPMG to increase productivity in the pub sector.

Removing barriers is key in supporting small businesses. For pubs, the disproportionate business rates burden is a continued barrier to growth and investment, and the response highlights the real need for business rates reform as well as urgent reform of the Small Brewer Relief Scheme to support growth.

BBPA Chief Executive Brigid Simmonds commented, “The small business is the engine of the UK economy and pubs are a vital part of so many communities up and down the country. Many pubs are struggling under the burden of taxation, from business rates to beer duty, and it is important that the Government looks at ways in which it can best support our vital sector.”