A DISTRICT MP is calling on the Government to give extra financial support to businesses battling with rising costs.

Philip Davies, whose Shipley constituency includes Cullingworth and Denholme, says firms only just getting over the impact of the pandemic are now facing soaring inflation and energy prices.

He said Government schemes and grants which were available as part of an overall support package during the pandemic helped keep a lot of businesses afloat, but that serious concerns remained for many companies.

Mr Davies has suggested cutting taxes to ease the burden, and he raised the issue during Treasury Questions in the Commons.

He said: "Many people are grateful to the Chancellor for the support he has given to help them with their energy bills, but a lot of businesses are also struggling with very high energy costs. I wonder if he would consider giving further support to businesses in order to help them through that, preferably by cutting their taxes?

"It would be a tragedy if the Chancellor was to keep all of those businesses going at huge cost throughout the pandemic only to see them come a cropper now because of the inflationary cost pressures caused by those periods of lockdown."

Mr Davies – a long-time campaigner for lower taxes – said everything possible should be done to support people, given inflation had reached a 40-year high.

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, responded: "I know that Philip is a champion of all his small businesses and rightly so, because they have endured the pandemic and are bouncing back strongly on the other side and we want to support that.

"He mentioned tax cuts. I hope he can reassure his small businesses that this year they are benefitting from two specific tax cuts – one of business rates which is delivering about a £5,000 reduction in business rates for a typical pub, but also a £1,000 tax cut on National Insurance contributions with the increase in employment allowance. These are two very particular tax cuts that are helping businesses this year and of course we will support them in the years to come."

During Treasury Questions, Mr Davies also pressed the Chancellor to reduce fuel duty further following a five pence per litre reduction earlier in the year.

Mr Davies said the impact of the earlier cut had not been felt by the public and that a bigger reduction was needed.