Press Releases

Low Pay Commission Urged to Consider Harm to Small Shops from Minimum Wage Rises

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has submitted evidence to the Low Pay Commission, calling on the commission to carefully assess the impact of the rate rise on small retailers.

In its submission, ACS notes that according to a survey of retailers, increases in the minimum wage correlate with a negative effect on business competitiveness. 56% of retailers stated that NMW rises have made their business less competitive.

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Politicians Must Not Undermine Low Pay Commission on Minimum Wage

Local shops have responded to recent announcements on the minimum wage, calling for politicians not to undermine the decision making process of the Low Pay Commission.

At the Labour Party’s annual conference, Mr Miliband pledged that the minimum wage would rise to £8.00 an hour by 2020. The current minimum wage rate is due to rise to £6.50 next month.

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MPs Raise Concerns About Effectiveness of Town Centre First Policy

MPs have raised question about the effectiveness of the planning system to direct new retail investment in town centres during an oral evidence session on the National Planning Policy Framework.  John Pugh MP for Southport and member of the Communities and Local Government Selection Committee referenced ACS’ (the Association of Convenience Stores) report ‘Retail Planning Decision Under the NPPF’ during the evidence session.

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ACS Unveils 2014 Local Shop Report

The 2014 Local Shop Report has revealed the vital contribution that local shops make to the UK economy and the investment in services that continues to drive growth in the sector.

Published today, the report offers brand new information about the diverse range of services that stores offer to their communities as well as key information about the entrepreneurs that run stores, their staff and the market as a whole.

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Lowman: Sunday Trading Regulations an 'Enduring Compromise'

ACS Chief Executive James Lowman has appeared on BBC radio and television to discuss the retention of current Sunday Trading regulations.

Speaking on Radio 5 Live and BBC Breakfast this morning on the 20 year anniversary of the introduction of the Sunday trading rules, Mr Lowman spoke of the important compromise that balances economic, social and cultural considerations.

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ACS Welcomes HMRC Pledge to Work With Licensing Authorities

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has welcomed a new crackdown on the illicit trade in tobacco and alcohol announced by HM Revenue and Customs.

ACS Chief Executive James Lowman said: “We believe that any retailer who sells non-duty paid alcohol or tobacco should be subject to the full force of the law. This new wave of activity from HMRC is a welcome sign, and their commitment to working with licensing authorities gives hope that more retailers selling illicit alcohol and tobacco will lose their licence.”

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Opus Energy Commit to Ending Rollover Contracts

ACS has welcomed an announcement from energy company Opus on plans to stop the use of rollover contracts.

In an announcement posted on the company’s website, Opus state that will cease offering the automatic rollover contracts to all new customers as of October 2014. All existing customer contracts will stop auto-renewal by Spring 2015.

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Citizens Advice Survey Highlights Continuing Issues in Energy Market

ACS has welcomed new evidence from Citizens Advice on small business energy contracts, and has renewed its call on Ofgem to ensure that all energy companies adhere to the same standards. 

The survey from Citizens Advice reports that 46% of small businesses are concerned about their electricity bills, compared with 16% who were worried about access to finance. 

ACS research

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