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GOVERNMENT MUST STEP IN TO EASE RATES SHOCK

[ 10-06-2010 ]

A head of steam is building behind the campaign to tackle the iniquities resulting from this year’s Business Rates revaluation, with the issue being raised during today’s exchanges at First Minister’s Questions in the Scottish Parliament.  Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said:
 
“Many of our members have been hit hard by increases in their rates bills of up to 414% this year as a result of revaluation.  Even for small businesses, this can mean having to find an extra £10,000 or more this year – a difficult task given the fragile state of our economy.
 
“What is particularly worrying is that Scottish businesses are almost alone in the UK in having to face these massive increases.  English businesses are having their rises capped at 12.5% per year, whereas in Northern Ireland, the Government there has abandoned its scheduled revaluation altogether because of the impact of the recession on the basis of rates valuations.
 
“Businesses from Dumfries to Inverurie and from Dumbarton to Edinburgh are all trying to come to terms with their new rates bills and are having to take difficult decisions to find the resources to pay this tax.  Our message to the Scottish Government is that it is not too late to step in to address the problems for the 40% of Scottish businesses whose bills are going up this year.  Scottish businesses need support from Government at this time; otherwise they could end up at a competitive disadvantage to firms in other parts of the UK.”
 
 

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