Retailers call for scrapping of business rates for smallest companies

A Government consultation on how best to administer the rates system closes today, and a submission by The British Retail Consortium, seen by the Telegraph, calls for no business rates to be levied on properties with a rateable value below £12,000.

While this would therefore only be of benefit to particularly small companies, the group estimates that this change would benefit 100,000 businesses and 1.14m properties.

These properties account for 64 per cent of those eligible for business rates, but generate just 6pc of rates revenues, so the move would free up time for Government valuers and allow them to re-evaluate other properties more regularly.

The BRC’s submission is reported to have said: “Removing these properties from the financial and administrative burden of business rates would have a hugely positive effect, with the cost to the public purse outweighed by the boost to enterprise and the substantial efficiency savings that the exemption would bring.”

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