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  5. SNS calls on Scottish Government to review business rates for Scotland’s local papers

The Scottish Newspaper Society is calling on the Scottish Government to match a review of business rates for local newspapers in England announced by Chancellor George Osborne in today’s Budget speech.

The Chancellor said: “Local newspapers are a vital part of community life – but they’ve had a tough time in recent years – so today we announce a consultation on how we can provide them with tax support too.”

Osborne added that local newspapers are a “vital part of a healthy democracy” and the consultation would  help publishers “adapt to new technology and changing circumstances”.

All matters relating to business rates are devolved to the Scottish Parliament and SNS director John McLellan commented: “This is obviously very good news for our colleagues south of the Border, but the conditions which apply there are similar to those in Scotland and we hope the Scottish Government will also undertake a review of the way in which Scotland’s local newspaper publishers are taxed.”