Liquor prices in Odisha will jump by 5 to 10 per cent from 1 April 2-23, as the state government decided to increase the license and application fees for manufacturers, suppliers and retailers in the new Excise Policy for 2023-24.
The policy was notified by the state’s excise department on Thursday, and as per the policy there will also be a marginal increase in excise duty for Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and minimum guarantee quota (MGQ). The hike will lead to an increase in retail alcohol costs to the tune of 5 to 10 per cent.
The excise policy has also approved opening of beach shacks on the lines of Goa to boost tourism in the state. The state government announced guidelines for serving liquor in the shacks. The licence will be granted only to the Odisha Tourism Development Corporation (OTDC) and not to any private operator.
As per the policy, the shacks can be opened near different water bodies such as rivers, lakes and dams apart from sea beaches. The annual licence fee for each beach shack will be Rs 50,000. Beach shack licence will be considered as a special category of ‘restaurant ON’ licence. Lifting of liquor will be done for the shacks by the OTDC only.
Common infrastructure for the shacks such as power connection, water supply, sewerage connections and solid waste management will be provided by the OTDC or any other relevant body. Besides, the OTDC will have to decide the operators for the beach shacks through an appropriate method. The OTDC as the licensee will be responsible for compliance of all procedures.
As per the new policy, application fee for new/renewal of ‘OFF shops’ has been increased from Rs 1.1 lakh to Rs 1.2 lakh. The MGQ and retailer fees have also been increased. The annual composite label registration fee for FL OFF shops, FL ON shops for sale of all brands has been fixed at Rs 50,000. This was earlier fixed at Rs 40,000.
The policy announced that to promote ease of doing business, emphasis on automation of various processes like issue of permit, passes, licences and payments will continue as per the 5T action plan of the state government.