CEO comment on UK tax free shopping developments

Steven Medway, CEO of the King’s Road and Knightsbridge Partnership BIDs comments:

“Clearly it is disappointing news that the Chancellor’s reversal of most of the Growth Plan measures means that the re-introduction of a tax-free shopping scheme, planned for 2024/5, will now not go ahead.

The Association of International Retail, is planning to use a cost/benefit report commissioned from Oxford Economics, due to be published next week, to challenge the Treasury’s estimated £2 billion annual cost of the scheme.

We believe the estimate is too high and does not take account of additional taxes generated by greater visitor spending.

We will be joining the Association of International Retailers in their campaign to persuade the Chancellor to ask the independent Office of Budget Responsibility to assess the full economic impact of the scheme, based on the Oxford Economics findings.

A more favourable cost/benefit assessment by the OBR will strengthen calls for the reintroduction of the scheme as a growth measure.”