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Bira sets out expectations for this month’s Budget.

Posted on in Business News , Cycles News

The British Independent Retailers Association (BIRA), which works with over 6,000 independent businesses of all sizes across the UK, has outlined its expectations from the government to create a positive impact for the high street after such a difficult year ahead of the Budget on November 27th.

Jeremy Hunt

Andrew Goodacre, CEO of Bira, said: “With the November budget approaching, we are eager to express our expectations and hopes for the forthcoming policies that will significantly impact the retail sector.

“We believe that the proposed measures can pave the way for a robust and sustainable economic recovery, benefiting both businesses and consumers alike and we wish for the government to stand up and take note of the following requests from us to help rebuild our high street.”

In the request, Bira highlighted the following issues that need to be addressed:

Business Rates

It says it is imperative that the government considers retaining the current retail discount at 75% for businesses with a rates payable value of up to £110,000 per annum. To promote a stable business environment, it urges the freezing of the rates multiplier, along with the implementation of measures that provide certainty to businesses, fostering an environment conducive to investment. Making the current rates discount permanent would be a significant step in this direction.

Corporation Tax

Bira advocates for the introduction of an allowance in corporation tax similar to the system implemented for income tax. This move will be instrumental in supporting businesses, ensuring their sustained growth and contribution to the overall economic landscape.

Tax-Free Shopping

Reintroducing tax-free shopping is critical to stimulating retail activity, not only in major urban centres but also in all tourist destinations across the country. By reinstating this system, the government can foster increased spending, catering to the rising number of tourists and promoting economic resilience within the retail sector.

National Minimum Wage and Employer Support

Recognising the upcoming increase in the National Minimum Wage, it emphasises the necessity for a proportional increase in the employer’s national insurance allowance by 20%. This adjustment will provide essential support to businesses, enabling them to manage costs and maintain a balanced operational framework.

Business Grants for Sustainability

Bira said it strongly advocates for the continuation of business grants designed to support small enterprises in implementing energy-saving investments. Independent retailers are committed to fostering sustainability, and adequate government assistance in this area will play a pivotal role in facilitating their efforts.

In anticipation of the upcoming budget, Bira said it remains committed to working collaboratively with the government and relevant stakeholders to ensure that the proposed measures align with the collective interests of the retail industry and the broader business community.

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