Jersey alcohol duty rise 'is too high' says constable

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Plans to introduce duty on alcohol by up to 10% cannot be justified, the constable of St Helier has said.

Constable Simon Crowcroft said the proposed increase was too high.

Treasury Minister Senator Philip Ozouf's budget included a plan to increase alcohol duty rates above the most recent rate of inflation.

He wants to put an extra 10% duty on spirits and wine, 8% on strong beer and cider, and 5% on weaker beer and cider.

Constable Crowcroft said the rises would add to inflation and put pressure on pubs and clubs.

He said the proposed duty increases on alcohol should be limited to 2.5% for all types of alcohol.

He said: "I believe that such large increases in the cost of alcohol cannot be justified, as they will add to inflation and continue to put pressure on licensed premises, where the consumption of alcohol can be controlled far better than home consumption."

Senator Ozouf said the cost of limiting duty increase to 2.5% would be about £1m per year.

The treasury minister has yet to comment on the proposals.

The budget is due to be debated by the States of Jersey on 4 December.

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