FWD repeats call for duty stamps on beer

The FWD has reiterated its call for duty stamps on beer after new figures published by HM Revenue amp; Customs illustrated the enormous scale of duty fraud in the beer market.

The HMRC report compares estimates of the amount of duty fraud in the beer market and says that the average of estimates for 2009-2010 was £500m, or 10% of the market, up from £400m and 8% the previous year.

FWD chief executive James Bielby said this represented a significant loss to both the Treasury and legitimate wholesalers, and added: “Our members believe that the Government must act to stamp out this illegal supply chain for cheap alcohol and ensure that alcohol products are distributed by legitimate, duty-collecting wholesalers.

“They also believe that further rises in alcohol duty are simply pouring water into a leaking bucket and that preventative measures such as the introduction of duty stamps on beer bottles and cans will turn off the tap for duty fraudsters, while protecting retailers from accidentally buying illegal stock.”

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