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BRC urges Chancellor to take action on business rates

16 Aug 2019

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) has called for Chancellor Sajid Javid to 'take action' on business rates.

More than 50 retailers have signed a joint letter to the Chancellor, urging him to 'fix the UK's broken business rates system'. The letter has been signed by major retailers, including supermarkets, fashion chains and homeware and department stores.

The BRC is calling for the government to 'address many of the challenges posed by business rates'. The letter urges the Chancellor to effectuate a freeze in the business rates multiplier; fix transitional relief; introduce an 'Improvement Relief' for ratepayers; and ensure the Valuation Office Agency is 'fully resourced' to do its job.

Commenting on the issue, Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive of the BRC, said: 'These four fixes would be an important step to reform the broken business rates system which holds back investment, threatens jobs and harms our high streets.

'The fact that over 50 retail CEOs have come together on this issue should send a powerful message to the government. Retail accounts for 5% of the economy, yet pays 25% of all business rates – this disparity is damaging our high streets and harming the communities they support.'