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The launch of BT Sport can provide a boost to the pub trade, the Chief Executive of BT Retail has suggested.

Speaking to the Broadcasting Press Guild, Marc Watson claimed pub landlords will now be able to show Saturday lunchtime Premiership football more affordably.

BT Sport has taken over this popular slot from Sky for the 2013-14 season, and is planning to charge 20 per cent less than its rival's current rates.

Mr Watson noted that Saturday lunchtime is "one of the busiest periods for pubs", and "very, very important" to the economics of many businesses.

"I’d love to think that because of BT Sport, every pub in the land is going to be full every lunchtime," he told the news provider.

“It’s not going to be quite like that, but what you get is that if people see the channel in the pub, see what we do and that we do a good job of it, then it will actually increase their desire to have more access to it.”

In addition, Mr Watson expressed hope that Sky may respond to BT's pricing by reducing the rates it charges pub businesses for sports channel access.

"We hope they’ll reflect in their pricing the fact that they’re not able any more to offer Premier League football on Saturday lunchtimes," he stated.

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