BPF backs campaign to halt ‘damaging’ business rate hike

The BPF also pointed out the compounding effect of linking business rates to RPI meant they had doubled over the past two decades.

Annual rates increases are currently based on Retail Price Index inflation figures from the previous September, meaning struggling retailers face a 5.6% rates hike in April.

Separate IPD data on standard shop rents shows that while inflation has risen by 94% since 1989, rents for standard shops have only risen by 24%, and in real terms therefore fallen by 37%.

Ian Fletcher, director of policy at the British Property Federation, said: "This damaging business rate hike will come at a time when retailers are fighting for their very survival. 2012 has already seen several high street names either restructure or enter into administration.

"Linking business rates to RPI has meant they have doubled over the last 20 years and Government should provide greater certainty for businesses by fixing the business rate uplift each year, which we have suggested should be at the rate of the inflation target, currently 2%."

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