The government has announced that the scheduled revaluation of business rates, due to take place this summer, has been postponed due to the virus outbreak.
The Non Domestic Rating (Lists) Bill 2019-20 was originally introduced to bring the date of the next revaluation forward from 2022 to 2021. Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick announced today that the scheduled revaluation will no longer take place in 2021 to help ease uncertainty for firms affected by the coronavirus.
The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) welcomed the postponement.
ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “Business rates are one of the biggest financial and administrative burdens faced by retailers and due to the current crisis local shops are already under immense pressure and the full extent of the impact of COVID-19 is currently unknown.
“We welcome the decision to postpone the revaluation as this will give local shops more time to recover from the impact of coronavirus and will provide retailers with much-needed certainty of tax liabilities during this unprecedented time.”
The Federation of Independent Retailers (NFRN) gave a partial welcome to the announcement, but iadded that ndependent retailers are still calling for the system to be overhauled
National President Stuart Reddish said: “On the face of it, this announcement seems to be good news but, in truth, the business rates system is broken and continues to do enormous damage to the businesses of independent retailers as they try to complete against online retailers who pay much less.
”While the decision not to charge business rates this year was extremely welcome, we want – and need - HM Treasury to move quickly with regards to the business rates review announced by the Chancellor in the spring budget as soon as Covid is out of the way. That way, retailers will be able to have certainty and a fairer system,” he added.