Coronavirus: year-long rates holiday for retailers

Fiona Hyslop

Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop has outlined the actions being taken by the Scottish Government to support businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Available from 1 April, a £2.2bn package of measures includes:

  • a full year’s 100% non-domestic rates relief for businesses in the retail, hospitality and tourism sectors
  • £10,000 grants for small businesses in receipt of the Small Business Bonus Scheme or Rural Relief
  • £25,000 grants for hospitality, leisure and retail properties with a rateable value between £18,000 and £51,000
  • 6% relief for all properties, effectively freezing the poundage rate next year
  • extending the go live date for the deposit return scheme to July 2022

Addressing the Scottish Parliament, Hyslop said: “The overall economic impact is clearly likely to be significant, though the scale and duration of the impact are difficult to predict.

“Depressed economic activity this year will have implications for the public finances through lower tax receipts and higher welfare spending.

“This will have severe economic consequences and we are treating it as an economic emergency, triggered by the enormity of the health emergency.

“I welcome the further support announced by the Chancellor and the Scottish Government will pass all consequentials to businesses to help them through this challenging period.

“I will continue to work closely with the UK Government and the other devolved administrations as this situation will require a coordinated UK response.”

The £2.2bn package supersedes the £320m package announced on 14 March and includes an additional £1.9bn of increased support following the Chancellor’s announcement on 17 March.