Over 400 publicans from all corners of Ireland will gather at the 43rd annual conference of the Vintners’ Federation of Ireland (VFI) in Wexford Town from Monday 9th to Wednesday 11th May where a motion will be proposed to members on the need to engage with Government and other regulatory bodies to reduce the cost of doing business in Ireland. The motion outlines how this in turn will enable small and medium sized businesses meet growing labour costs and remain viable.

Pádraig Cribben, CEO of the Vintners’ Federation of Ireland commented; “While there has been a level of improvement within the trade over the past year, it still faces significant challenges, none more so than the cost of doing business. This is quite evident when you consider the escalating cost of insurance, the level of commercial and water rates and other compliance and regulatory impositions.”

“The reality of the situation is that these costs are hampering the progress of small business owners and publicans across Ireland. It’s crucial the new Government and other regulatory bodies recognise this and offers its support.”
At this year’s AGM, a motion will be debated seeking a root and branch overhaul of how claims are handled and addressed. It calls on Government to strengthen the role of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board and to find means to reduce the overall legal costs involved in settling claims.

Commenting on the motion, Pádraig Cribben, CEO of the VFI said; “As is stands, the cost of settling insurance claims in Ireland is out of control particularly in comparison to other countries. This is having a severe knock on effect resulting in rising insurance premiums not only for publicans but across the board.”

“If claims need to be settled, the courts should be the last rather than the first place to go. Enhanced empowerment of the Personal Injuries Assessment Board would be a step in the right direction in terms of reducing costs in this regard.”

The VFI AGM is taking place at Clayton Whites Hotel in Wexford Town from Monday 9th to Wednesday 11th May. Other motions for discussion call for a greater VFI input to tourism policy and planning. The Irish Pub is Ireland’s most popular tourist destination, and the VFI network of Pubs has a lot to offer in enhancing this brand.