Latest Leisure Industry News, Brexit, Rates and others

By | July 12, 2016

Propel

Latest Leisure Industry News, Brexit, Rates and others

Brexit has critical implications for UK’s beverage sector, new Rabobank report states:

Brexit will have critical implications for the beverage sector given the UK’s role as both a major importer of wine and a major supplier of scotch, according to a new report by Rabobank. The report breaks down the impact of Brexit on different beverage sectors. The report said the Brexit vote would have critical implications for the wine industry, with knock-on effects felt in nearly all major wine-producing regions. It stated: “The prospect of the largest wine-importing country in the world leaving its free trade agreement with the largest wine-producing region in the world will have an obvious impact on trade flows in the long term, but the marked devaluation of the British pound will begin to drive some of those changes almost immediately. The EU is, by far, the largest supplier of wine to the UK – France, Italy and Spain alone supplied 60% of British imports in 2015 – and assuming the soft British pound reduces demand for wine imports, those wines will need to find new markets. EU suppliers are expected to redouble their efforts in other markets, such as the US and China, which will impact domestic suppliers, as well as other foreign competitors.” For beer, the report said although the UK was a fairly open beer market (18% of consumption volume is imported and 13% of production volume exported), most leading brands were owned by international brewers with production facilities in both the UK and abroad. It said British brewers, including the craft beer sector, could see domestic competition ease as foreign competitors were affected by weakness in the British pound and the long-term threat of trade barriers. For the global spirits market, the report stated the weakness of the British pound would begin to have an impact on British spirits imports but would provide opportunities for scotch exports in the near term. It said scotch suppliers were clearly concerned about the potential of losing the free trade agreement with their largest market. However, it added that if Scotland broke away from the UK and remained in the EU, this would alleviate the problem for scotch suppliers but EU wineries might be “less happy about providing free access to the EU market for scotch without receiving reciprocal access to the British market for wine”.

BBPA sets out new self-assessment model for business rates and calls for more frequent revaluations:

The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has called for more frequent revaluations of business rates and has set out proposals for a new self-assessment model. The BBPA is supporting the government’s objective of moving to more frequent revaluations of business rates, to at least a three-yearly process. To help make a system of frequent revaluations work better for both pubs and the government, the BBPA has set out proposals for a new self-assessment model in its consultation response. This would be based broadly on the current methodology, but with greater flexibility built in, to help avoid additional costs and administrative burdens on the pub sector. Business rates already make up about 10% of pub operating costs. Currently, business rates are calculated based on an outlet’s Fair Maintainable Turnover (FMT), the level of revenue that a reasonably efficient operator would be able to generate in the premises. In practice, rates can be based on actual turnover, and this can penalise successful businesses that are performing beyond expectations. The BBPA said reforms to the business rates system should focus on FMT, while increased frequency of revaluations would ensure rates are more closely aligned with current market conditions. The BBPA’s proposed self-assessment model would give licensees greater insight into the process, and added transparency. This would also allow for the government’s aim of more frequent revaluations without significant cost, to either government or businesses, the BBPA said. It is also calling for a light-touch approach when it comes to compliance and enforcement of any new scheme – one that does not penalise genuine mistakes or self-assessments put forward in good faith but are subsequently disputed. BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “We have always believed that the pub sector needs more frequent rates revaluations, which is essential in ensuring that the business rates burden is spread more fairly and better reflects the current market. The self-assessment approach that we are putting forward offers both pubs and the government a way of achieving this in an efficient way that would be good for both.”

BHA calls for Seaside Tsar:

A Seaside Tsar should be appointed to help Britain’s forgotten seaside towns fight back from decades of decay, according to new research that paints a grim picture of the problems many coastal communities face. The report, commissioned by the British Hospitality Association (BHA), said people living in seaside towns were more likely to be poorly educated, unemployed, unemployable, lacking in ambition, claiming benefits, and living in multiple occupation housing. A separate survey, conducted by the owners of Butlin’s, found more than half of the British public had not visited the British seaside in the past three years, while 65% believed the British seaside was run-down and in need of investment. Nine out of the ten most deprived neighbourhoods in the UK are seaside communities, according to the Department for Communities and Local Government 2015 Index of Multiple Deprivation. The collapse of shipbuilding and fishing, the decline of the traditional seaside holiday, growing drug use, and cutbacks in budgets affecting maintenance of public places, street cleaning, tourism promotion and the provision of education had all contributed to the situation, the report stated. The BHA report – Creating Coastal Powerhouses – said businesses in seaside towns were more likely to fail, especially if they provided accommodation, and called on the government to create Coastal Enterprise Zones to encourage businesses to move to and invest in the coast. The association, which represents more than 40,000 businesses in the hospitality and tourism industry which, in turn, employs 4.5 million people, cites the successful regeneration of Folkestone in Kent and along the Jurassic Coast in Dorset and east Devon as examples of how the British seaside can recover.

CBRE – steady growth in June for commercial property returns and rental values but capital value growth slows:

UK commercial property rents grew by 0.2% in June despite uncertainty in the build-up to the EU referendum, according to the latest CBRE Monthly Index. Capital values grew by 0.1% in June, a drop on 0.2% in May, but the 0.6% total returns for the month matched returns seen almost every month of the year to date. In H1 as a whole, rental value growth hit 1.1%, compared with 1.7% in H1 2015. Capital values grew by 0.6% for H1 2016, compared with 4.1% in H1 2015. Total returns were also lower, from 6.7% in H1 2015 to 3.0% in H1 2016. This lower return partly reflected an increase in stamp duty land tax in March. Miles Gibson, of CBRE UK, said July’s monthly index would give a clearer indication of how monthly-valued assets had been affected by Brexit.

ALMR chief executive calls on Theresa May to guarantee rights of non-UK EU nationals to stay in UK:

Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers Kate Nicholls has called on the next PM Theresa May to guarantee the rights of non-UK EU nationals to stay in the UK. She said: “With Theresa May now confirmed as the next UK Prime Minister, the government must act decisively to secure our long-term economic stability, business and consumer confidence. The reaction of the markets today shows how valuable certainty and stability is for investors and the same is true for business, particularly in hospitality which is a key engine of economic growth and employment. We now need a clear road map to lock in competitiveness and allow companies to reliably plan ahead for the future – particularly around recruitment. The new Prime Minister will set the tone for the UK’s approach to the EU negotiations and we are pleased that she has sent a clear signal that nothing will be rushed and no steps will be taken until we know what is needed from them. She must ensure that the needs of sectors like hospitality and small businesses are taken into account – simple access to the single market, the ability to hire the right people and driving down the costs and burdens of regulation. Above all else, we call on Theresa May as one of her first acts as the new Prime Minister, to guarantee non-UK EU nationals, many thousands of whom work in our pubs, bars, hotels and restaurants, to be granted the right to remain in the UK both before, during and after the negotiations. We need a clear Brexit employment strategy.”

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