16th November 2020
Scotland – We are continuing to press both for progress on the music in pubs issue and the need for AGCs to be open with Bookies in Level 3. It is simply wrong that machines are switched on in bookmakers whilst AGCs remain closed. We should both be treated as non-essential retail and open in Level 3. Having said that the First Minister is widely reported to have decided to announce tomorrow that the West of the Central build is to go into Level 4 which is full lockdown.
England – members may be interested to read the updated guidance on the Additional Restrictions Grant. The Grant is for businesses that are severely impacted by the pandemic and specifically states that the eligibility criteria, although to be set by local authorities, should include suppliers into the leisure and hospitality sector. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-youre-eligible-for-the-coronavirus-additional-restrictions-grant
UK – A good step by step guide to claiming under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was published last week and can be found here. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-job-retention-scheme-step-by-step-guide-for-employers?utm_source=fdf469fd-5dbf-4920-a9c1-064ee6e4a593&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Tariffs on amusement products from the USA
In a non-Covid related piece of news, we learnt last week that the EU has slapped a 25% tariff on amusement products (and many other things) imported from the USA. The measure comes as part of an on-going dispute between the EU and the USA on support for the aircraft manufacturing industry. It has also been sanctioned by the WTO.
I have asked Government to confirm whether the tariff applies to goods imported into the UK given we have left the EU and are no longer a member state, but there may be transition arrangements that in this case means it does. I have had no response yet. This will not however alter the position for continental distributors that sell into the UK market. Euromat is working away with its contacts within the Commission to ascertain what, if anything, can be done. I am staying in close contact with the Euromat team through its President, Jason Frost.
One of the things we will need to pull together as part of the lobbying is a better handle on the impact of the tariff on the business in the UK. It would be helpful at this stage if members affected could just drop me a note so I can communicate with you directly and with more information.