NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Finance Secretary commits to business rates help

Derek Mackay Image copyright Scottish Parliament

Finance Secretary Derek Mackay has said he is committed to working with businesses and councils in the north east of Scotland to find a solution to rising business rates.

Planned business rates increases could cripple parts of Scotland's hospitality industry, it has been claimed.

Some firms are facing rates rises of more than 100%, after new rateable values were given to their properties.

Mr Mackay made the commitment after meeting business leaders in Aberdeen.

It was to discuss their concerns about the new rates being introduced later this year.

He said: "I am looking at trying to provide a local solution."

Firms in the north east say they are being particularly badly hit as their property values were assessed while the region's economy was booming.

Mr Mackay announced a series of changes to business rates during his Scottish budget announcement in December.

In the changes due to come into effect from 1 April, business rates poundage will be reduced by 3.7% to 46.6p.

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