Liquor price to rise in Odisha from April 1; Govt approves beach shacks

Bhubaneswar: Starting April 1, liquor prices in Odisha are expected to increase by five to ten percent due to an increase in license and application fees for liquor manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers.

The new Excise Policy for 2023-24, announced on Thursday, also includes a marginal increase in excise duty for Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and minimum guarantee quota (MGQ), which is likely to contribute to the increase in retail alcohol costs.

Additionally, the Excise policy has allowed for the opening of beach shacks in the state to promote tourism. However, the license for these shacks will only be granted to the Odisha Tourism Development Corporation (OTDC) and not to any private operator.

The shacks can be opened near different water bodies such as rivers, lakes, and dams, apart from sea beaches. The beach shack license will be considered a special category of ‘restaurant ON’ license, and the OTDC will have to decide on the operators for the beach shacks through an appropriate method. The OTDC, as the licensee, will be responsible for ensuring compliance with all procedures.

The new policy will not grant licenses for new liquor off-shops during the year, but it will allow for the renewal of licenses for existing shops. Moreover, applications for opening on-shops in rural areas will also not be accepted.

In terms of fees, the application fee for new or 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, while the annual composite label registration fee for FL OFF shops and FL ON shops for sale of all brands has been fixed at Rs 50,000, up from the previous amount of Rs 40,000.

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