Leading Labour MP calls on Chancellor to cut “shocking” duty levels in Budget

Erin Smith

Sadiq Khan MP

Sadiq Khan MP

Sadiq was elected Labour MP for Tooting in London in 2005 and re-elected in 2010 with an increased share of the vote. Since 2010, he has been Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice (with responsibility for political and constitutional reform).


Leading front bench MP Sadiq Khan has followed up a Harpers request to lobby the Chancellor for a 2% cut in alcohol duty for wine and spirits and back the Wine & Spirit Trade Association-led Drop the Duty campaign. 

Khan followed up an email from Harpers business editor Erin Smith, as part of the Drop the Duty campaign, by sending a direct letter to the Chancellor George Osborne setting out the reasons why a duty cut is so necessary.

In his detailed response Khan, who is the shadow London minister and Labour MP for Balham, Tooting and Earlsfied, described current duty levels as “shocking” and called on the Chancellor to support the industry’s call for a duty cut.

Letter from Rt Hon Sadiq Khan MP to Chancellor George Osborne to cut the duty by 2%

Letter from Rt Hon Sadiq Khan MP to Chancellor

Letter from Rt Hon Sadiq Khan MP to Chancellor George Osborne to cut the duty by 2%

Khan wrote: “My constituents have highlighted the finding of independent economists which state that a modest 2% cut would generate an extra £1.5 billion for public finances,” he wrote. ”As a sector that contributes almost £22 billion towards GDP, it makes sense to support the wine and spirit sector to give more. Besides being financially logical, it would also add to the 500,000 jobs that already exist within this industry.”

He added: “It is evident these figures are shocking to say the least and steps must be taken to address this issue.”

Khan went on to request the Chancellor consider a reduction in the duty for the 2015 Budget. ”On behalf of my constituents, I am asking you in your capacity as Chancellor of the Exchequer if you would consider making a modest 2% reduction in the duty on all alcohol products.”

If the Chancellor did not see a 2% cut as viable, Khan said he would need to explain the reasons behind that decision.

Khan has been involved in campaigns supporting the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) and successfully worked with a local community ‘Save the Wheatsheaf’ group to save a pub in Tooting Bec from being turned into a convenience supermarket.

There is still time to get involved in the Drop the Duty campaign. To email your MP directly with a pre-written letter simply click here. It takes only a few seconds and allows your voice to be heard.

WSTA Drop the Duty

Drop the Duty

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