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Retail group calls for Spring Budget support for independents

by Rachel Symonds
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A retail group supporting independents has issued a wish list for the forthcoming Spring Budget.

The British Independent Retailers Association (Bira) has put together its five item ‘wish list’ for the Chancellor to address in the Spring Budget, calling on Jeremy Hunt to address the issues facing the UK’s high street when he speaks in Parliament on March 6.

Andrew Goodacre, CEO of Bira (pictured), urged the Government to address the issues that are critical in ensuring the continued growth and prosperity of the retail sector.

He commented: “As the spring season approaches, we look to the Government to sow the seeds for a robust and thriving retail landscape. Independent retailers are the lifeblood of our economy, and we believe that addressing these five key issues in the Spring Budget will not only support businesses but also contribute to the overall economic wellbeing of the nation.”

The wish list includes a permanent retail discount on rates at 75 per cent for businesses with a rates payable value of up to £110,000 per annum, and policies to improve consumer confidence and spending. Bira also wants to see an increase in employer National Insurance Allowance which, it says, is crucial to providing essential support to businesses, helping them manage costs and maintain a balanced operational framework. Furthermore, Bira wants a reintroduction of tax-free shopping in the UK, and action to free businesses from expensive energy contracts.

“These wishes represent a collective vision for a vibrant and flourishing retail landscape. We believe that by addressing these crucial issues in the Spring Budget, the government can lay the groundwork for a prosperous future for independent retailers and the UK economy as a whole,” Goodacre added.

  • Look out for the March issue of Health Food Business, out next week, for more on Bira’s Spring Budget wishlist.

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