A statement by the National Off-Licence Association (NOffLA) revealed that over a third of its members have let staff go in the last 18 months, leading to 584 job losses in total. In addition, it said that 550 individual off-licences have closed or lapsed since 2008.
Evelyn Jones, Chairperson, NOffLA put the blame for this situation on rises in excise duty over the last two years. “The job losses we are seeing are as a direct result of excise duty increases in Budget 2013 & 2014”, she said.
“We are calling on the government to reduce this duty on alcohol in the upcoming budget to protect existing jobs and encourage sustainable economic growth within local communities all across Ireland.”
She continued, “Our research shows that a reversal in excise to 2012 levels would stimulate employment within the sector leading to the creation of over 900 jobs. Unfortunately we are unable to create these valuable jobs when they are sabotaged by on-going excise increases”.