Independent retailers met with Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard last month to discuss concerns around the removal of small business rates relief in Scotland.

An issue raised at the cross-parliamentary meeting in Scottish Parliament was around the removal of the large business rates supplement on companies with a rateable value £51,000 or more.

Retailer Ferhan Ashiq, who attended the meeting, and warned independent retailers could be affected by the change. He told RN: “I had concerns small business rates relief might be removed to offset the cost.

“Richard Leonard said there was no evidence small business rates relief had worked, but I told him it helped me a great deal in the last four years.”

The comments come as the Court of Appeal made a landmark ruling last month that ATMs should not receive separate business rates.

Ashiq added: “I also spoke about the disparity that councils across England and Wales won’t be charged ATM business rates. Another attendee claimed Scottish retailers don’t pay the charges, but I’m going to raise the issue again as I’m armed with invoices from retailers who do pay the rate.”

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