Deductibility of meeting costs in cafes

We are currently writing to Hon David Parker, Minister to make a change to our tax laws.

New Zealand Specialty Coffee Association

PO Box 1213

Nelson 7010

December 2020

The Honourable David Parker

Minister of Revenue

New Zealand Parliament

220 Willis Street, Te Aro
Wellington 6141

Dear Minister

Re Deductibility of meeting costs in cafes

The New Zealand Specialty Coffee Association (NZSCA) is the national industry body for specialty coffee stakeholders in New Zealand and we are writing on behalf of the coffee industry. 

As you are aware the IRD deem meeting costs in cafes to be entertainment and therefore are only 50% deductible as a business expense. 

We would like you to consider that this classification has become outdated and is no longer relevant.

The current work force has become more mobile and for many people the café is indeed their regular place of work. This has become even more evident with the impact of Covid and the move to more home-based work and the disestablishment of the traditional office for many people.

As a secondary point, a few sectors of the economy have taken the brunt of effects of Covid and one of the most severely impacted is the hospitality industry. 

We believe a reclassification making costs of meeting in a café 100% tax deductible as a business expense, would encourage more café meetings and would be a strong support for the struggling community of café owners. 

Minister, we believe this regulation has become a relic of our past and unfairly penalises mobile workers, everyday businesspeople, the café industry and adds additional compliance costs as an insult to injury. 

We thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Yours faithfully

Ros Cattell

NZSCA President