Independent retailers won’t survive winter, Bira warns

Bira has warned that independent retailers will not survive the winter, if the price of energy increases.  

According to the trade union, the spiking price of gas is set to impact independent stores at their most vulnerable. 

As a result, the association is calling for the government to permanently reduce business rates from April 2022 to reduce the financial burden on the struggling high street.  

Bira said that alongside the increases in national insurance, the minimum wage and supply chain costs, the rising expense of gas is a financial burden that risks putting many retailers out of business.  

READ MORE: Government under pressure to act as HGV driver shortage hits fuel deliveries

“Bira is concerned at the rising cost of doing business, with energy being the latest increase faced by hard-pressed independent retailers,” chief executive Andrew Goodacre said.  

“Recovery in the high streets is very fragile and it is not always possible for the retailers to pass cost price increases on to the consumer. 

“It is against this backdrop that Bira is calling on the government to ensure that business rates are permanently reduced, with effect from April 2022.  

“The government has to reduce the cost burden on the high street and they have the opportunity to do so in the autumn statement on October 27.” 

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