Brighton Kemptown MP Simon Kirby has spoken of his dismay at the rate of pub closures and welcomed a consultation on measures to tackle problems in the trade.
Mr Kirby, a Conservative, highlighted an announcement by the Business Secretary Vince Cable.
The Liberal Democrat minister plans to appoint an independent adjudicator to address unfair practices in the pub industry and offer support to struggling landlords.
He also proposes drawing up a statutory code to govern the relationship between large pub companies and publicans.
The new code would be intended to ensure fair practice in a number of areas relating to the prices paid for beer and rent.
In particular, the proposed code would be designed to prevent abuses of the beer tie, which obliges publicans to sell particular types of beer.
Mr Kirby said: “It would enshrine the fundamental principle that ‘a tied licensee should be no worse off than a free-of-tie licensee’.”
The goal would be to ensure a level playing field in the pub sector.
Before the debate Mr Kirby said: “Having worked in the pub industry for many years I know first-hand how important it is for the economic and social health of communities across the country.
“I also know the pressure that the industry is under and I am dismayed by the rate of pub closures we are currently witnessing in the UK.
“I therefore welcome yesterday’s announcement that the government will be consulting on the introduction of a new adjudicator and a statutory code of practice.
“These measures have the potential to help struggling pub owners and address some of the problems in the relationship between large pub companies and publicans.
“I know that there are various opinions within the industry on the best way forward and I would urge interested parties in my constituency to contribute to the consultation.”
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