Independent retailers have urged the Chancellor to step in before next year’s hike in business rates brings about job losses in the convenience sector.

The Association of Convenience Stores has written to George Osbourne asking that he limit the increase in business rates next April to just 2%. As things stand, rates will rise by 5.6%, in line with inflation.

“This rates increase is a significant threat to achieving the Chancellor’s hope for growth and job creation in the convenience store sector,” said ACS chief executive James Lowman (pictured).

“He must act quickly to reassure businesses that he will not impose it. Given that the inflation target is 2%, it should be this that determines increases in business taxation.”

The body is also urging retailers to write to their local MPs. The pro forma letter for retailers can be downloaded here.

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