JD Wetherspoon pulls out of VAT campaign group

Claire Dodd

Claire Dodd

08 December 2015

JD Wetherspoon has withdrawn its support from leading VAT cut campaign group, VAT Club Jacques Borel, citing a lack of support.

In a statement the pub operator said it plans to set up its own lobby group to push for a reduction to the rates paid on food and drink by hospitality businesses.

Wetherspoon founder and chairman Tim Martin said: 'Jacques Borel has done an amazing job campaigning for a VAT cut over the past five years.

'He has led the way and has made great progress in terms of raising the profile of the case for a VAT cut and also for engaging with MPs and policy makers. I hope that those in the industry will appreciate the time and effort that he has put into the campaign.

'It is a shame that some big companies have not supported the campaign to date. I have decided that Wetherspoon can no longer support the VAT Club JB in its present form and believe there now needs to be an alliance of companies who believe, as I do, that a VAT cut is vital for the future of the hospitality sector.

'I will be working hard in the coming weeks to take this forward.'

VAT Club Jacques Borel has been most recently campaigning for staggered cuts. A report the group published in September found that a reduction in food and drink VAT rates from 10% to 20% would create 425,000 new jobs across the hospitality sector over a three year period. The group has the backing of other companies including Subway, Pizza Hut, Fuller’s, Monster Energy, Matthew Clark, Pret a Manger. TGI Friday’s and Heineken.

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