'Root and branch' review of business rates launched

By James Wallin, M&C Report

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Business rates Business rates in england and wales

A review of business rates has been launched
A review of business rates has been launched
The Government has launched its root and branch review of business rates.

The consultation​, which was launched yesterday and is open until 12 June, seeks to reform the business rates system “to make it fit for a 21st​ century economy”.

The move was welcomed by Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers chief executive, Kate Nicholls, who said: “The current system of rates is no longer fit for purpose. It has gone from being a tax on business to a tax on property occupation and it therefore places disproportionate burdens on high street casual dining, pubs and small businesses in particular.

“The ALMR has repeatedly called for a root and branch reform of a business rates system that currently sees pubs and bars paying 15p per pint in rates compared to about 1 penny per pint in supermarkets. The UK’s high streets are more highly taxed than any other property market in Europe and this is clearly stifling investment.


“Currently, the calculation of rental values is not responsive enough to provide up-to-date information. We need a much more flexible system with more frequent revaluations, which is linked to annualised CPI and which has safeguards built in so as not to penalise success or over performing operators.”

Last week the BBPA urged licensees to respond quickly to requests for information from the Valuation Office Agency requesting trading data that will be used to feed into the revaluation process.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “A wide ranging review is sorely needed, which I welcome, but if the Government is committed to raising the same amount each year, they need to think about widening the net and there must be a system that is responsive to the pressures on small and struggling businesses.

“In the pub sector we know all too well how the rates burden does not respond quickly enough to an adverse change in the trading climate. We will certainly be using the opportunity to put forward proposals to address these challenges, and the huge rates burden on pubs.”

Related topics Legislation

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