The REA has submitted a response to the Government Fundamental Review of Business Rates.
The REA welcomes this Fundamental Review of Business Rates as a promised opportunity to reform the business rates system so that it can support the development of a decarbonising economy.
In this consultation response, we note that:
- We broadly support a simplification of the reliefs system in a way that promotes decarbonisation.
- We ask that to support businesses wishing to decarbonise, the Government removes renewables and clean technology from the Plants and Machinery (P&M) Order.
- We recommend a reduction and freeze on the Uniform Business Rate (UBR) multiplier for the duration of each rating list, to ensure a predictable and supportive business rates system, at a time when businesses are facing extreme uncertainty.
- Finally, we also support the proposals to increase the frequency of revaluations, which will enable a better reflection of changing economic environments in the future.
These measures should be introduced as an effective way to promote decarbonisation and help the UK meet its Net Zero target by 2050, as required by UK law. It is worth noting that around 80% of UK buildings that will be around in 2050 have already been built, and 10% of our annual UK emissions come from heating buildings alone. The measures listed above are a simple way to ‘kill two birds with one stone’ – firstly, by supporting businesses at a time of need, enabling them to take action themselves to reduce their carbon footprints, and, secondly, by furthering our national decarbonisation targets.