The drinks industry is fighting the Chancellor's tax hike on premium packaged spirits every step of the way. Last month's budget increased the excise duty on PPSs by 65%. The change came into effect on April 28 but an informal group of the leading producers has won the backing of Tory and LibDem MPs who tabled an amendment to the Finance Bill going through its committee stage this week. Their proposed change would have reversed the government's duty hike, but the amendment was defeated by 16 votes to nine. Bacardi-Martini's executive director Chris Searle said the bill would go back to the House of Commons for its report stage in six weeks and there are plans to reintroduce the amendment then. {{NEWS }}