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BRC Responds To Spring Budget 2023

Sean Aidan Calderbank Jeremy Hunt Budget shutterstock_2275340641

Responding to the Chancellor’s Spring Budget, Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, said:

“In the face of volatile demand caused by high inflation and low consumer confidence, measures to support households with the cost of living, such as the ongoing energy bill support and changes to childcare costs, are welcomed. However, many businesses are weighed down by a myriad of higher costs right through the supply chain. Government must do more to limit one of the biggest drags to retail investment, which is oncoming regulatory burdens heading down the track, or risk a crash in business investment and further inflationary pressures.

“The Chancellor understands the need to train people to re-enter the workforce, yet he missed a key opportunity to fix the issues with the Apprenticeship Levy system that would support this very goal. Over the last three years, businesses have lost £3.5bn in unused Levy funds. To break this cycle of wasted investment, it is vital that Government allows businesses to use their hard-earned Levy funds for a wider array of skills courses. Without spending a penny, the Chancellor would increase investment in our workforce, helping businesses to prepare the UK economy for the skills it needs.

“While the Autumn Budget brought in some welcome changes to the Business Rates system, further reform is needed. The broken Business Rates system remains a drag on business investment, jobs, and economic growth. Rates must be paid in full whether firms are making a profit or a loss. This makes Business Rates the final nail in the coffin for many struggling stores; shutting shops, costing jobs and preventing new stores openings. The Chancellor should make good on the Conservative 2019 pledge to reform Rates and lay out a clear roadmap for future reforms.”

Source : BRC

Image : Sean Aidan Calderbank / shutterstock.com (2275340641)

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15 March 2023

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