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Ease burden on business to offset lower retail sales and footfall, Bira urges Government 

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The British Independent Retailers Association (Bira) says recent figures showing that UK retail sales dropped in March due to the rising cost of living, are “disappointing”.

In figures released today by the ONS, it showed that retail sales fell by 1.3% in March, and February sales figures were also down.

Responding, Bira’s CEO Andrew Goodacre said: “The sales for March are disappointing but not wholly surprising to retailers who are experiencing lower footfall and reduced consumer confidence every day.

“When trying to deal with significant cost increases, lower sales is the last thing a retailer needs.

“We have been telling the government since last Autumn that for many reasons 2022 will be harder for the high streets than the previous two Covid years due to significant cost pressures”

“We have been telling the government since last Autumn that for many reasons 2022 will be harder for the high streets than the previous two Covid years due to significant cost pressures.

“The government can no longer ignore the impact of rising costs on business and need to reverse business rates and National Insurance increases to ease the burden. The government spent £340 billion supporting the economy during the pandemic and if that investment is not going to be wasted, then action needs to be taken now to both ease the burden on businesses and improve consumer confidence.”

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