UK retailers along with Boots and Asda to urge chancellor to reform broken rates system

More than 50 retailers in the UK, including Asda and Boots, have urged the UK chancellor to revise tax rules which augment the UK High Street.

According to the retailers, the chancellor needed to fix the outdated and ‘broken business rates system’. Furthermore, the group of retailers alleged that the tax had increased to a 50% since the 1990, which has also resulted in retailers going out of business.

In the wake of the situation, the treasury had announced funding of £3.6bn in the past month in order to support the town centres and high streets. “The Chancellor will announce further details of the government’s policy programme in the coming weeks and months,” said a sourceperson of the treasury with regards to the incidence.

The group of retailers appealed a letter to the chancellor, which was coordinated by the trade body of British Retail Consortium. By the medium of the letter, the group drew attention to the 5% retail accounted for the economy, but was paid 25% of all business rates, a property based tax.

As a result of which, the group pointed out to the ‘disparity’ of the damaging high streets which was harming the communities which the groups supported. Due to this clause, there were an increasing number of empty shops and the vacancy rate amounted to a four-and-a-half year high.

Furthermore, the group of retailers also highlighted the need for businesses in London and the South East, in order to be able to pay more business rates which will ultimately take the pressure off the firms in Midlands and in the North, in addition to avoiding the incidence of a tax rise overall.

“The likelihood of a no-deal Brexit appears to be increasing, which we believe would place a considerable strain on retailers in the UK,” cites a statement in the letter.

“In this context, the prime minister’s intention to pursue an economic package to boost business and investment in the UK is crucially important; we strongly believe that reform of the broken business rates system should be front and centre of that package.”

In the UK, retailers comprise a group of three million people. The substantial number also makes the industry one of UK’s largest private sector employer, based on British Retail Consortium.

This episode also highlights the fact that the retailer industry is not the only one which is urging concessions in order to tackle the no deal Brexit.