Foreign Made Foreign Liquor (FMFL) and Wine will become cheaper in Odisha as the state government has reduced excise duty on these products in its new Excise Policy for the year 2022-23.
In order to reduce disparity in MRP with neighbouring states and also to promote high quality FMFL and low strength wine, the duty on wine and FMFL has been reduced, the new policy said. However, excise duty for Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and beer has been kept unchanged.
Noting that these guidelines seek to improve the efficiency of processes associated with the manufacture, import, export, transport and sale of alcoholic beverages, the policy said it attached due priority to health and well being of the citizens of the state.
There has been a nominal increase in license fee, MGQ (Minimum Guaranteed Quantity), application fee for manufacturers, suppliers as well as retailers in this year’s policy.
Some more Premium “OFF” shops have been proposed in Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Sambalpur, Rourkela Municipal Corporations as well as four other municipalities, the policy said.
To encourage low alcoholic drinks, the microbrewery policy has been redesigned. A separate license fee slab of Rs 5 lakh/annum for standalone micro brewery has been introduced without Restaurant “ON” license.
Similarly, in order to improve compliance, fees for temporary bar licenses have been reduced. The fee for additional bars in “ON” shops have also been rationalised.
To promote ease of doing business, the emphasis on automation of various processes like issue of permit/ passes/ licenses/ payments will continue under the 5T Action Plan of Government of Odisha, as per the policy.
The policy also envisaged that the Excise department will strengthen the enforcement activities through improved intelligence collection, better infrastructure and resources, enhanced deployment of enforcement staff as well as use of technology for monitoring and supervision.
In order to restrict entry of inexperienced suppliers or brands with unverified credentials in the Odisha market, certain qualifying criteria for brand registration has been introduced in this year’s policy, it said.
As per the policy document, no license shall be granted to a liquor shop having the name of deities /eminent personalities (living or dead) which can hurt the sentiments of the people.
The policy also noted that some liquor shops are using the word ‘sarkari’ in the name of the shop. So, the department has clarified that No OFF shop should use ‘sarkari or government’ in their name. The license holder may use ‘Licensed FL OFF shop’ signage. Home delivery of liquor shall continue in addition to counter sale. All guidelines issued earlier relating to social distancing to contain the spread of Covid-19 shall be observed. All other features of existing Excise Policy will continue as it was, it said.
It said Maximmum Retail Price (MRP) will be displayed on each bottle of FMFL, IMFL, wine, beer and country liquor and sold accordingly. The vendors are asked to issue cash memo to all consumers and not charge above MRP, failing which vendors shall be penalised with a fine.