Retail industry could face consequences over business rate rise

Retailers could have to pay an extra £190 million in business rates after inflation hit 2.7% in August, a six month high.

According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) if the Consumer Price Index figure stays the same for this month, retailers will have to pay the extra £190 million for their annual bill from April next year.

The retail industry currently pays out £7 billion a year in business rates, which the BRC are campaigning to reduce, in order to promote growth on the high street.

According to the ACT, it is believed the government will announce the rates will be calculated from the Office of National Statistic’s Consumer Price Index figure, as part of its upcoming Autumn budget. This would be instead of calculating the figure from the Retail Prices index.

Heightened business rates could see an increase in store closures, as retailers struggle to meet the demand of already-high bills.

The BRC is calling on the government to freeze the business rates multiplier until the next revaluation, in an effort to prevent shops from closing and protect jobs.

Hayley Everett

Multimedia Reporter

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