Commenting on the Chancellor’s announcements and how they might affect GIMA members, GIMA Director, Vicky Nuttall, confirmed: “The new stamp duty changes should encourage more movement in the housing market, which in turn should create more demand in the home and garden product markets. A buoyant UK housing market tends to result in increased consumer confidence. This coupled with the upwardly revised UK growth forecasts should help to encourage consumer spending in 2015.
“Fuel & haulage rates continue to be a major problem for manufacturers and suppliers. The freeze on fuel duty will go some way to help our members battle this ever increasing overhead.
“Smaller members will be delighted that the government has continued to pledge funds to support & guarantee lending to SME’s via banks and venture capital funding. We tend to forget that although there are a number of dominant brands and suppliers in our industry, there are also a huge number of smaller suppliers trying to stake their claim in the garden industry.
“In the longer term, the proposed review of the business rates system should go some way to support the traditional bricks and mortar retail channels in their fight against on-line retailers. Anything that helps support our member’s retail customers businesses should be good for our members too, as long as they choose to re-invest in the gardening category.”
She added: “However, we still need the sun to shine to allow any of our members to take advantage of any of the above!”
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