Empty Property Rates (SMEs)

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:00 am on 11th January 2012.

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Photo of Paul Uppal Paul Uppal Conservative, Wolverhampton South West 11:00 am, 11th January 2012

I congratulate my hon. Friend on securing this debate and I apologise—I would very much have liked to have been here at the beginning of this debate. The point that he has just made is very important. Regarding regeneration, in my constituency, I have found that empty property rates often make individuals who own commercial or industrial property view that property as a problem. Consequently, they will sometimes consider measures to try to mitigate the empty property rate tax. So the tax actually changes the mindset of property owners; it changes how they view the property. They do not view it as an opportunity but as a millstone around their necks.