Drinks group pitches for 9pc VAT rate
PUBS feed more tourists than any other food provider, according to the Drinks Industry Group of Ireland, while food and drink accounts for 35pc of all tourist spending. The organisation has called for government to reverse last years excise increase and retain the 9pc VAT rate for the hospitality industry to support growth in tourism.
Its new report said pubs play an integral role in the €5.7bn Irish tourism industry. "The Irish Pub" is listed as Ireland's top experience by 'Lonely Planet' and the Guinness Storehouse the most popular fee-paying attraction in the country. More than 1m people visited the Guinness Storehouse in 2011 while 250,000 visited The Old Jameson Distillery. The drinks industry also plays a role in event-based tourism through its sponsorship of sporting organisations, valued at €35m each year, and sponsorship of the country's 900 annual festivals.