The EU has renewed the regulations that permit the beer tie for another 10 years, with few changes that will impact on pubs and brewers,writes John Harrington. The Block Exemption Regulations, which permit vertical agreements such as beer ties, have been renewed until June 2022. The new rules have kept the same threshold of market share - 30% - under which the exemptions will apply. Rupert Croft, partner at law firm Maitland Walker, said: “The most notable change is that the definition of market share of 30% will now include buyers as well as suppliers, but this is unlikely to affect pub companies. "It looks like business as usual for the pub industry." The EU has also decided not to have specific policies for different industries. The new rules apply from June, although there will be a one-year transitional phase. Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said: "The rules adopted today will ensure that consumers can buy goods and services at the best available prices wherever they are located in the EU while leaving companies without market power essentially free to organise their sales network as they see best." Fair Pint and the GMB had been lobbying the European Commission not to renew the opt out for the beer tie.