A cap on business rates bills for hotels across Scotland and offices in Aberdeen has been announced.
Following a cap in 2017-18 and 2018-19, hospitality businesses will now see rates capped at a maximum of 12.5 per cent in real terms each year until 1st April 2022.
Offices in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire will also see any rise capped at 12.5 per cent in real terms, in recognition of the effect the fallen oil price has had on the local economy.
The policy, which is unique in the UK, ensures that new properties will not pay business rates until twelve months after first occupation. In addition, properties will not see any improvement-related increases in their rates bill for one year after completion of the works.
Making the announcement, Public Finance Minister Kate Forbes said: “In order to continue supporting Scotland’s wider economy, we must first ensure that local businesses, who play a valuable role in generating economic growth, receive the correct and necessary support in order to maintain business performance.
“A promising benchmark has been established as we move towards achieving a more secure, sustainable future for Scotland’s hospitality sector, and the Scottish Government has again shown a willingness to listen to the business community as we implement our ambitious non-domestic rates reforms.”
The Business Growth Accelerator was introduced by the Scottish Government from 1st April 2018 to support business growth and encourage investment.