EXTENSION OF RATES RELIEF WILL BE BOOST FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
Published: 16 December, 2011
"While we were pressing, within the Executive, for an additional levy to also include financial institutions, utility companies, hotel chains, major wholesalers, this measure is nonetheless welcome in helping create a more level playing field in terms of competition.
""In particular, the small business rates relief scheme - which Sinn Féin lobbied for - will be not only be retained but also extended. This scheme currently benefits around 16,000 smaller businesses across the North, which receive a rates reduction of up to 50%. Under the new arrangements, it is expected that the number of businesses receiving it will be doubled.
"No-one is saying this is a solution to the town centre versus out of town debate or that it is a cure for all the difficulties facing our smaller businesses. However, it is a welcome step and evidence of the kind of positive, innovative measures which can be taken to protect a business sector which is the backbone of our local economy." ENDS