Tesco Chief Executive Lewis Calls For Online Sales Levy
Tesco's chief executive, Dave Lewis, has called for the introduction of an online sales levy that could help reduce business rates and level the "tax playing field between physical retailers and their online competitors".
In a speech to the British Chambers of Commerce Annual Conference, Lewis suggested that a 2% levy could raise £1.5 billion (€1.76 billion), which, in turn, could lead to a business rate cut of 20%.
Such a levy would be compatible with UK and European Union law and revenue neutral to the Treasury, "incentivising investment and creating a more sustainable and growing tax base in retail."
While Lewis did acknowledge that there is an argument that such a levy "taxes the future", he added, "I would argue business rates are killing the present. Damaging our economy. Retailers have no choice but to pass through the extra costs […] it’s hurting shoppers and households, too."
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