The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has responded to proposals from PPL for fee rises to its Specially Featured Entertainment (SFE) Tariff, which covers the playing of music at discos in pubs and nightclubs.
Commenting on the fee proposals, BBPA Chief Executive Brigid Simmonds said:
“We are extremely disappointed that PPL are proposing such eye-watering increases to their Specially Featured Entertainment (SFE) tariff which covers pubs, clubs and other venues that put on discos and DJ events for customers. A 450% increase in the tariff (from 3.8p per person per hour, to 22p per person per hour) on top of proposed structural changes that could more than double this figure, will simply not be viable for many licensees at a time when pubs are already facing major cost pressures in terms of increasing taxes and other regulatory costs. Whilst we welcome discussions on ensuring fairness and clarity in how the tariff is calculated and if improvements can be made to deliver this, we believe that these discussions must take place first and any impact considered further before there are proposals for cost increases.
“As PPL note in the consultation document, the SFE tariff is already increased annually by the Retail Price Index (RPI). Of course, RPI itself is now a discredited measure of inflation, but the use of this measure will have seen the SFE tariff increase by over 50% since 2003. This is compared to a 38% increase in the Consumer Price Index, the official measure of inflation, during this period. We are grateful for the dialogue and engagement we have had with PPL on this issue over the last year, but see no justification for further increases in the tariff at this time and we will be responding accordingly.”