$15 a pint? Tell him he’s dreamin’!

Gympie motorcycle mechanic Wayne is not a fan of the beer tax.

By Donna Jones

There’s a not-so-hidden tax on beer that increases every six months, on 1 February and 1 August.

And as any beer-drinker will tell you when the price of a schooner goes up every six months, they feel like they’re getting the rough end of the pineapple.

Gympie motorcycle mechanic Wayne thinks the tax hikes every six months are a bit like taxing the people who can least afford it.

“They say they’re taxing something that’s a luxury, although a lot of people don’t see it as a luxury, they see it as a day-to-day type thing,“ he said.

“I think being Australian’s, we like to have a beer after a days’ work.“

News that the Brewers Association of Australia have described the latest rise in the beer tax as the largest in more than 30 years had Wayne angry, feeling a larger tax hike is unjustified.

“I don’t understand how that could be possible because it’s already set up to rise automatically every 6 months already,“ he said.

John Preston, CEO of the Brewers Association of Australia, said the rise is alarming.

“Australia’s tax on beer is going up yet again with today’s (Monday, 1 August) increase being the largest in more than 30 years,“ he said.

“Australians are taxed on beer more than almost any other nation. We have seen almost 20 increases in Australia’s beer tax over the past decade alone.

“Brewers and pub and club operators were extremely disappointed the former Government did not deliver on a proposed reduction in beer tax at this year’s March Budget.

“Sadly, we’re now seeing the impact as pub patrons will soon be faced with the prospect of regularly paying around $15 for a pint at their local.

“For a small pub, club or other venue the latest tax hike will mean an increase of more than $2700 a year in their tax bill – at a time when they are still struggling to deal with the on-going impacts of the pandemic.

“This is a problem that the new Treasurer has inherited from his predecessors and there are many competing demands on the Budget.

“Nonetheless, we believe there is a strong case for beer tax relief to be provided by the new Federal Government – with the hidden beer tax to go up again in February 2023.