Autumn Statement expected to review business rates

The Autumn Statement:
George Osborne will reveal plans today
  (Photo:  )

A review of business rates is expected to be unveiled in Chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement today.

In an attempt to help the high street compete with internet measures, the Chancellor is expected to examine the current business rate system.

He is also expected to reveal support for small businesses in the statement, which will take place at 12:30 GMT today in the Commons.

Any warnings on future tax and spending plans will also be flagged, although many key investment plans have already been made known.

The plans to review business rates come after the British Retail Consortium (BRC) revealed it would be lobbying to push for change.

It said it had written a letter to The Chancellor, suggesting he should consider a reform in business rates, to enable companies to invest more in space and employment. Helen Dickinson, BRC director general, said that, in turn, this would support the economic recovery.

She said: “The retail industry’s championing of the need for fundamental reform of business rates is being increasingly amplified by industries as diverse as steel and car manufacturing and some of the country’s largest property companies. This is a strong indication that the time is right to set out a roadmap to fundamentally reform the system and make it fit-for-purpose for the 21st century.

“We do not have any expectation that this could be fulfilled in advance of the general election, but an indication that it will be on the agenda for a future government will resonate very well across British business and facilitate further planning to allow business to play a fuller part in the economic recovery.”

British Baker will be covering the results of the statement live online and on Twitter as they are unveiled. 

Correction: British baker earlier published that Chancellor George Osborne had visited Warburtons ahead of the Autumn Statement. This was a misunderstanding and he in fact visited last July, where he commented on the state of the economy. 

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