UK live sector again calls for cut in VAT rate on tickets


February 27, 2023

The live industry has again called on the UK government to reinstate the lower VAT rate on tickets that was put in place during the pandemic as venues, promoters and artists continue to face significant financial challenges.

Trade group LIVE said in a statement this morning that “the live music sector is a catalyst for economic activity in towns and cities right across the UK. However, after a tough couple of years during the pandemic, much of the sector is still dealing with the effects of increased costs, post-COVID changes, and a punitive, uncompetitive taxation system”.

LIVE says that the government should announce it is reinstating the lower 5% VAT rate on tickets as well as cutting business rates in its upcoming budget statement, which is due to be made on 15 Mar.

“The live music sector is a catalyst for economic activity right across the UK but many businesses are still reeling from the pandemic”, LIVE CEO Jon Collins says. “Combined with rising costs, an uncompetitive tax system is holding back a sector-wide resurgence”.

“The government has a golden opportunity to turbo boost the industry by reintroducing the 5% rate of VAT on ticket sales in the upcoming spring budget”, he adds. “This change would help return live music to full strength, protect much loved grassroots venues and mean even more amazing festivals, concerts and gigs in towns and cities across the country”.

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