The Licensed Vintners Association (LVA) has welcomed measures put forward for pubs in the new Programme for Government.
The document underpinning the formation of the new government includes a commitment to additional support measures for the hospitality sector on the back of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
The LVA said that welcome measures in the programme include the creation of a Night-time Economy Taskforce, which will review the licensing application process and trading hours for pubs.
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The LVA stated that it believes that the reform of the licensing application process is long overdue, as the current process is overly expensive and bureaucratic.
The LVA also said that it supports the commitment to introduce minimum unit pricing on alcohol and believes that this should be implemented in the coming months.
"Seeking To Engage Extensively With The New Government"
LVA chief executive Donall O'Keeffe commened, "Overall, there are a number of very positive measures in this document which, if implemented correctly, will make a major difference to the recovery of the pub sector in this country. Of course, the devil will be in the detail, and that is why we will be seeking to engage extensively with the new government on several of these proposals. What is vital is that nothing is done to further damage a pub sector that has been forced to take unparalleled action and which will require support and assistance over the coming months if it is to recover.
"In particular, the measures to support pubs and the rest of the hospitality sector in the stimulus plan will be vitally important. The pubs in this country are unique. They are not only significant employers but also a part of the community in every city, town and village across the country while also being a strong contributor to our tourism offering. This will need to be recognised in any recovery packages - something we will be discussing with the new government as soon as the opportunity arises."
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