To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of reducing the Small Business Multiplier to (a) help small traders and (b) support high streets.
High streets are a crucial part of our communities, and the Government recognises the sector faces challenges. That’s why we recently announced a call for evidence looking at the future of our high streets. We are establishing a panel of industry leaders to diagnose the issues currently affecting our high streets, and advise on the best long-term approach to help their revival.
The Government has introduced a range of business rates reforms and measures worth over £10 billion to 2023. This includes increasing the threshold for Small Business Rates Relief, meaning over 600,000 small businesses - occupiers of a third of all properties – pay no business rates at all. We have also brought forward the switch in the annual indexation of business rates from Retail Price Index to the main measure of inflation, currently Consumer Price Index. Bringing forward this measure two years earlier than previously planned is worth £2.3 billion over the next 5 years.