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BIRA expresses disappointment at Scottish Government

Clydebank, Glasgow

Lifestyle

BIRA expresses disappointment at Scottish Government

The British Independent Retailers Association has expressed that it is “disappointed” in the move by the Scottish Government’s recent budget release.

BIRA’s CEO Andrew Goodacre:

“Unlike the governments in England and Wales, the Scottish government has not introduced a retail discount to reduce next year’s rate bills by 75% for the smaller high street retailers. Whilst the limit for rates relief ha been increased, this will not help many of those entrepreneurs who own shops. I cannot understand why the Scottish government has decided to ignore the high street in this way.”

The association, which works with over 6,000 independent businesses of all sizes across the UK, has reacted to the news that the government has not offered more support to hard-pressed independent retailers on its high streets, and has said they have “turned their backs” on them.

Knightswood Shopping Centre, Glasgow

Argyle Street, Glasgow

In its budget, the Scottish government announced a freeze on the business rates multiplier and an extension of the small business relief scheme – both of which are welcome. However, for the smaller retailers, these steps are more than offset by the fact that the direct rates relief enjoyed this year has been removed.

BIRA’s CEO Andrew Goodacre:

“The challenges faced by the smaller retailers are the same throughout the UK and Scotland should have followed the examples set in England and Wales where the retail discount for rates has been increased to 75%.

“Many Scottish retailers will now pay more in business rates than they have done this year, on top of the massively increased fuel bills, higher wages and supply chain inflation. This budget will harm the local high streets that are integral to communities throughout Scotland. It is ironic that a government standing for independence has turned its back on independents,”

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