CBI calls for cap to business rates in Budget 2013

With the 2013 Budget statement imminent, the Confederation of British Industry has called for businesses to be given a much-needed boost in the form of a cap on business rates.

 

Placing a 2% cap on business rate increases could work alongside other measures – such as removing stamp duty on equity finance for medium-sized businesses – as part of £950 million in tax measures for high-growth industries, the organisation suggests.

 

A further £1.25 billion could also be invested in housing and other capital investments, with the required £2.2 billion released from elsewhere in the Budget to make it fiscally neutral overall.

 

For high-growth firms in particular, the CBI is calling for better access to finance to overcome pension deficits and enable the necessary investment to establish new export companies.

 

Katja Hall, chief policy director at the CBI, says: “With news of the loss of our Aaa credit rating, it is crucial this Budget injects confidence, while delivering investment and growth.

 

“The benefits of the Funding for Lending scheme are starting to feed through, which will help businesses grow, but we also need to rebalance more towards exports; that’s why we want to see the various export and finance schemes up and running quickly.”

 

CBI director general John Cridland adds that “now is the time to kick-start confidence”, but also suggests that the government must continue to follow its existing plan for an austere approach to spending and tackling the deficit.

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