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Steep business rates rise ahead for small shops

Over 56,000 English shops will face steep tax hikes next year, according to new research.

Business rate increases will add up to £151.78m in April, according to rates specialist CVS, hitting those already battling inflation, a rise in import prices and shaky consumer confidence.

The research from CVS shows 37,363 small shops will see their business rates bills rise above inflation and around 30,000 are facing a rates increase of between 10%-14.99%. Over 10,000 medium sized shops are facing increases of over 15%, an average tax hike of £3,253. Almost a thousand large shops could see an average increase of £46,153 each.

Chief executive Mark Rigby urged chancellor Phillip Hammond to be bold in his upcoming autumn Budget and called for a freeze in inflationary rate rises next year.

“Brexit is driving inflation. Import prices have risen given the fall in the pound with prices rising faster than wages causing households to ‘tighten their belts’ on spending, especially on ‘big ticket’ items. Business investment has slowed and confidence fallen. Against this backdrop we already have the highest property taxes not only in Europe, but the world. The chancellor must be bold within his upcoming Budget next month through an unprecedented stimulus of freezing rate rises in April 2018.”



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