Call for greater urgency in duty fraud controls

The growing problem of duty fraud in beer and wine was highlighted by the outgoing FWD chairman Rodney Hunt in his opening address to the FWD Annual Conference.

Hunt said: “The problem has increased exponentially. This canker is now migrating to wine sales and in total poses a huge threat to overall profitability.”

He highlighted the success HM Revenue Customs had achieved in curbing tobacco smuggling, although noting it had taken six years to get to grips with the problem.

He said: “When significant resources are employed, the revenue loss can be controlled. We are calling for the Government to show the same commitment to stop the rot in our beer and wine sales by providing HMRC with the resources it needs. And by getting on with it quickly – within weeks and not years.”

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