What is the SNP policy on business rates and taxes?

To help small businesses, we have protected the Small Business Bonus Scheme to provide 100 per cent rates relief to business premises with values up to £15,000. This will bring the total number of business premises who pay no rates at all to 100,000 - almost half of all rateable premises. The scheme is part of the best package of support for small business in the UK.

A review, commissioned by the Scottish Government, to improve the current system of business rates has concluded. The Scottish Government has now considered the recommendations of the Barclay Review and will accept the recommendations, with the exception of the recommendation to curtail charity relief for universities or council ALEOs. You can read more about the review here.

We will go beyond the recommendations of the Barclay Review, by introducing a Business Growth Accelerator, meaning new build properties will not pay Business Rates until they’re occupied and tenants won’t pay rates for their first 12 months.

We will also cap inflationary poundage uplift at CPI, not RPI.

Our package of business rates measures provides a boost of almost £100m and helps keep Scotland the most attractive place in the UK to do business.

We have also taken a range of other measures over the past year that will result in seven out of ten business premises in Scotland paying no rates at all, or receiving bills that are either the same or lower as the last year.

  • A national relief that caps increases for hotels, pubs, cafes and restaurants at 12.5 per cent, benefiting around 8,500 properties.
  • To support the renewables sector, we are providing rates relief of up to 100 per cent for qualifying community renewables projects and new build schemes, and lower the eligibility threshold for the community schemes from 1 MW to 0.5 MW.
  • We are also introducing a new targeted 60% relief for hydro with details of the upper threshold to be confirmed in due course.
  • A new 50 per cent relief is also being offered for stand-alone district heating schemes too.


At Westminster, we won’t support further reductions to Corporation Tax. However, to support job creation, we will propose a doubling of the Employment Allowance – the National Insurance discount that businesses receive when they increase employment.

To boost productivity, we will support extension of the Annual Investment Allowance, which encourages firms to invest in plant and machinery, from £200,000 to £1 million. We will also demand fresh support for our oil and gas sector, and an industrial strategy that works for Scotland.

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