Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Alcohol Excise Increase Another Hurdle For Brewers In UncertainEconomic Times

“The 1 July alcohol excise increase could not come at a worse time for brewers, with the effects of COVID-19 still holding sway on the economy and the hospitality sector far from being back to normal,” said Brewers Association of New Zealand Executive Director Dylan Firth.

“The increase which occurs annually is based on the most recent CPI increase to March 2020 and will add another 2.63% to the current excise rates, the largest single increase for 9 years.”

“This would equate to $29m more the alcohol sector pays to government based on last year’s total excise take. Unlike we see with petrol, this may not be directly passed onto the consumer straight away. Businesses will make those decisions individually, especially understanding that consumers are already reluctant to spend during an economic downturn,” said Firth.

“Overall, in 2019 the alcohol sector paid almost $1.1b to the New Zealand Government in excise. The beer sector alone contributing $403m,” said Firth. “The CPI measurement used for this was for the period pre-lockdown to the end of March. The fact the increase is based on a CPI that did not take into account the full negative economic effect of COVID-19 to date is unfortunate, potentially costing the industry millions more than what a CPI measurement today would reflect,” said Firth.

“The brewing industry, like many other sectors in New Zealand, has had a difficult 2020 so far. With two of the most valuable channels to market closed over lockdown through bottle stores and hospitality venues. This has had a real impact on those in the brewing industry and with the wider hospitality industry still at a fraction of where it was pre-Covid-19, there is a long road to recovery on the horizon,” said Firth.

“Our members have been the first to acknowledge the role of industry to support our own where they can. To date our members have committed to support the wider hospitality sector through renegotiation of debt, extension of credit, cash back for unused product which was spoiled over lockdown and multi-million dollar spend in marketing encouraging consumers to support local.”

“The Brewers Association along with other industry bodies approached the Government requesting the excise be frozen in 2020 so we could focus on rebuilding and supporting our customers. However, the request was denied. Our hope is that the Government will acknowledge the long-term effects of COVID-19 and consider this in the coming years,“ said Firth.

“Other areas around excise we have been in discussions with the government include seeking excise refunds on keg beer that has spoiled over lockdown. Our members took back that stock and refunded customers as part of wider initiatives to support struggling hospitality industry and the excise refund would help us bear this cost during current hard times for business. While we have been in discussions with Government on how to make this work, to date there has been no decision.”

“The work we have been doing with Customs has been extremely encouraging, officials have gone over and above to assist where they can and within the bounds of the regulations they are governed by, but extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. We know that what we are asking with kegs would require minor amendments to legislation. So is in the hands of government,” said Firth.

“There are over 15,000 Kegs sitting out there filled with spoiled beer, taking up mountains of space. Our members just need the certainty of how to deal with the situation and can get back to supporting our customers and providing consumers with products they enjoy,” said Firth.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


It’s All In The Genomes: New Study Reveals Scale Of Havelock North Campylobacteriosis Outbreak

When the campylobacteria outbreak hit Havelock North in 2016, no-one fully understood how widely it affected the local communities. Gene-sequencing technology used by scientists has shown the true scale of the outbreak. The joint study from ESR, Massey ... More>>


Tiwai Point: Rio Tinto Announces Plans To Close Tiwai Point Smelter

Rio Tinto has just announced that it will wind down New Zealand Aluminium Smelters - the Tiwai Point smelter - saying the business is no longer viable. More>>


Freight: New Report On Auckland Port Relocation

The Government has released a major new report on the options for relocating the Port of Auckland’s freight operations while deferring any decision on the issue. More>>


Taxation: Black-Market Tobacco Sidesteps $287 Million In Excise Tax

Year-on-year increases in consumption of illicit tobacco in New Zealand have seen illegal trade swell to 11.5% of the total market. If consumed legally, illicit products would have netted the Government $287 million in excise tax during 2019. Independent ... More>>


Energy Sector: Meridian Spilled Water To Hike Electricity Prices - Authority Ruling

The Electricity Authority has found that generator Meridian Energy manipulated the power market, costing consumers about $80 million. More>>


XE Data Update: RBNZ Official Cash Rate Decision

The RBNZ will keep the Official Cash Rate (OCR) at 0.25%. T he key points in the RBNZ statement are: RBNZ keeps the OCR unchanged at 0.25% Maintain the LSAP (large scale asset purchase) at NZD$60 billion. Committee prepared to use additional monetary ... More>>


Electricity: Kiwis Ignore Promise Of Cheaper Power

Electric Kiwi and Flick Electric Co are joint winners of Canstar Blue’s award for Most Satisfied Customers | Electricity Providers From putting on an extra layer – rather than turning on a heater – to turning off lights and choosing the energy-saving ... More>>


ASB: Regional Economic Scoreboard Q1 2020

ASB NZ Regional Economic Scoreboard Gisborne still the place to be It has been Gisborne’s year, and the region comes out tops on our regional rankings for the fourth successive quarter. Like everywhere, question marks are about the COVID-19 impact on the future. ... More>>

RNZ: Economic Activity And Business Confidence Bouncing Back

Two surveys from ANZ show business confidence and economic activity have rebounded, but uncertainty about the future remains extreme. More>>


NIWA: The Climate Record That Keeps Getting Broken

Among the multitude of New Zealand climate statistics there is one record that continues to be broken month after month. Since January 2017 there has not been one month that recorded a below average nationwide temperature, according to NIWA’s seven station ... More>>


Govt: Extended Loan Scheme Keeps Business Afloat

Small businesses are getting greater certainty about access to finance with an extension to the interest-free cashflow loan scheme to the end of the year. The Small Business Cashflow Loan Scheme has already been extended once, to 24 July. Revenue and Small ... More>>


Science: 2019 Prime Minister’s Science Prizes Announced

The 2019 Prime Minister’s Science Prizes have been announced in a digital livestream event today. The Prizes recognise the impact of science on New Zealanders’ lives, celebrate the achievements of current scientists and encourage scientists of the ... More>>


Stardome Observatory: Young Kiwi Astro-Photographer Shoots For The Stars

Matariki by Josh Kirkley. The stars are aligning for up-and-coming Auckland-based astro-photographer Josh Kirkley (Kāi Tahu). During lockdown, one of his images was picked up by NASA and shared on the space agency’s Instagram to its 59.2 million ... More>>

DCANZ: Time For EU To Commit To A Level Playing Field For Trade

The Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand (DCANZ) has welcomed New Zealand Trade Minister David Parker’s statement that it is unacceptable for New Zealand exporters to continue facing an ‘unlevel playing field’ in the EU. Details leaked ... More>>


New Zealand Government: Supporting Kiwi Businesses To Resolve Rent Disputes

The Government will legislate to ensure businesses that suffered as a result of the COVID-19 response will get help to resolve disputes over commercial rent issues, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. More>>