Budget 2013 reaction: Ignoring business rates

Osborne remained curiously quiet on business rates, a disappointing blow for many businesses

Business rates will continue to rise after there was no mention of halting them in Osborne’s report, despite continuous please from retailers and the high-street.

The news has left business owners frustrated, we hear from a number of commentators why:

Robert Downes, Forum of Private Business
“Ask any small businesses what they wanted to see from this Budget and many will have said: ‘action on business rates’. We said before the Budget government couldn’t keep clobbering businesses with hike after hike, and unfortunately we haven’t seen that sentiment acknowledged today by Mr Osborne. “It was really a case of enough already years ago, and April’s increase which now goes ahead as planned will mean rates have spiralled by a mammoth 13% in just three years. There aren’t many businesses who’ve seen income increase by anything close to that figure with sluggish growth and recession to contend with in the same period.”

Saurav Chopra, CEO, Huddlebuy.co.uk
“A National Insurance cut to help small business hiring is very welcome but much more is needed to cut rising unemployment. Where is the help for Britain’s beleaguered high streets? Business rates continue to rise and shops and jobs continue to be lost.”

John Cridland, director-general, CBI
“Small and medium-sized businesses will be particularly encouraged that there was money available for the chancellor to cut the jobs tax through a new employment allowance. We also need to remember the impact of business rates on the hard-pressed high street.”

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