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Foreign liquor, beer prices set to rise in UP from April 1

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The new excise policy 2023-24 was cleared by Uttar Pradesh Cabinet on Saturday

Lucknow: The prices of foreign liquor and beer in Uttar Pradesh will increase by 10 per cent with the implementation of the new excise policy from April 1, an official statement said on Sunday.

The new excise policy 2023-24 was cleared by Uttar Pradesh Cabinet on Saturday.

According to the statement, an increment of 10 per cent has been made on licence fees of foreign liquor, beer, cannabis retail shops and model shops.

The government has also increased the fee for running the canteen facility at model shops to Rs 3 lakh from the present Rs 2 lakh in the new excise policy.

With the new policy, the government has also increased the licence fee and security for bonded warehouse licenses (BWFL-2A, 2B, 2C) of foreign liquor, beer and wine. The registration and renewal fees of the master warehouse have been increased too.

“The increase in licence fee and that of running canteen facility along with warehouse licences will eventually lead to a rise in liquor prices,” said Devesh Jaiswal of the UP Liquor Sellers’ Welfare Association.

“It will be too early to comment on how much the prices will increase,” he added.

A 10 per cent increase on the minimum guarantee quota (MGQ) of country-made liquor has also been made in the new liquor policy. With its implementation, the country liquor sellers would have to purchase 64.15 crore bulk litres of 36 per cent alcohol-by-volume (ABV) intensity instead of 58.32 crore bulk litres in 2022-23.

The government has not made changes in the existing timings of sales despite the push from the liquor lobby to extend the sale time till 11 pm from the current 10 am to 10 pm.

However, the government has brought in the provision to increase sale time on “special occasions.”

“On special occasions, the time of sale can be increased with the prior permission of the government,” reads the new excise policy. These “special occasions” are yet to be defined.

The licence fee has been increased for hotel or restaurant and club bar licences by creating a special category for the authority area of Gautam Budh Nagar, municipal corporation area of Lucknow and Ghaziabad within 5 km in their vicinity whether urban or rural, reads the policy.

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