Sajid Javid leads praise for independent retailers at Asian Trader Awards
MP pledges £6.7bn savings from business rate cuts
Secretary of state for communities and local government Sajid Javid praised independent retailers as “heroes of the high street” during his opening speech at the 2016 Asian Trader Awards.
Mr Javid said the government is committed to supporting the “guts and dedication” of local retailers by making sweeping cuts to business rates, which he claimed will save independents around £6.7m.
He added: “Britain’s high streets are a crucial part of our local and regional economies. They create jobs and inject some £600bn into our economy each year, and retailers play a huge role in that.
“That’s why we have announced the biggest cut in business rates England has ever seen. It is going to save businesses such as yours some £6.7bn over the next few years, and 600,000 of the smallest business won’t pay any rates at all.
“This is a government that supports anyone that has the guts and dedication to start or run a business to create jobs and grow the economy.”
Kalpesh Solanki, group managing editor of Asian Trader, hailed the “resilience” of independent retailers, adding: “Gone are the days when the major multiples are taking market share and growing relentlessly. Today, they are fighting for their survival and losing market share to a new breed of retailers.”
Winners at this year’s Asian Trader Awards, which took place on 22 November at the Park Plaza Westminster Hotel in London, included Imperial Tobacco, which scooped the Manufacturer of the Year Award, with Best Grocery Brand of the Year accolades going to Premier Foods’ Cadbury Amaze Bites.
Retailers were also recognised for their hard work over the last 12 months, with Aqueel Bashir of KASA Stores in Leeds winning the Best Independent Retailer Award and Saghir Hasham of Mr Booze in Derby picking up the Retailer Champion Award.
Meanwhile, Martin Inkster, UK and Ireland managing director of Philip Morris International, took home the Editor’s Award for his ongoing contribution to the retail trade.