Splitting the bill: Alcohol’s impact on the economy

Posted on: 22nd February 2017

The Institute of Alcohol Studies has just issued a new report entitled; Splitting the bill: Alcohol’s impact on the economy.

This report examines the assumption that a successful alcohol industry is beneficial to the UK in three ways. Firstly, through collation of the basic facts about the impact of the alcohol industry on the UK economy and how this has changed in recent years, reviewing both the benefits (income, jobs, exports and taxes), and the costs (in terms of sickness, unemployment and deaths) that it generates. Secondly, by analysing how changes in alcohol consumption affect the economy – and in particular, determining whether reducing drinking is likely to have negative economic consequences. Finally, by describing the likely effect on the alcohol industry of two major recent policy developments – the raising of the minimum wage and Britain’s exit from the EU.

The report concludes that there is little convincing evidence to suggest that lower spending on alcohol would harm the UK economy, and indeed offers some grounds to believe that reducing drinking could be of economic benefit.

To read the full report click here