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Business rates addressed in Autumn Statement

Chancellor George Osborne has revealed plans for business rate reforms, which he claims are aimed at helping business growth and job creation. It is also hoped that the changes will support high street stores struggling to compete in the digital age.

In his Autumn Statement, he confirmed that the Retail Prices Index cap on increasing business rates will be two per cent in England in 2014-5.

Businesses can pay over 12 months from the beginning of April next year, as opposed to the current 10 months. This will make life easier for small businesses struggling to keep up. Accountants in Prenton will no doubt be in the position to spread out their clients’ payments and show more fluid balance sheets over the course of a year.

The government will also extend the Small Business Rate Relief doubling for an additional 12 months; this will take effect from April 2014.

EY global head tax policy, Chris Sanger, said:

“By spending over £1bn next year on business rates, the Chancellor has shown that he has been listening to the pain felt by businesses through a system that has its origins in the Poor Laws of 1601 and was updated in 1990 alongside the introduction of the poll tax.”

Although Sanger feels that the changes are a positive in the short-term, he said that the key component of the speech delivered by the chancellor was the news of a discussion paper to be published by the government next spring. It will talk about the pros and cons of various options for longer-term changes to the administration of business rates.

Posted by Mark
December 11, 2013
Small Business

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