Tax-free shopping axe is blow to all UK


Tax-free shopping axe is blow to all UK: Boss of Yorkshire-based jeweller Berry’s warns over ‘farcical’ levy

Sparkle: Berry’s stocks brands like Cartier, whose ambassador is Lily Collins

Sparkle: Berry’s stocks brands like Cartier, whose ambassador is Lily Collins

The Government’s ‘farcical’ tourist tax is driving visitors away from Britain, the boss of Yorkshire-based jeweller Berry’s has warned. 

Critics have said the removal of VAT-free shopping for overseas tourists has dealt a ‘hammer blow’ to London. 

But Simon Walton, who runs the 125-year-old business, said that while the emphasis has been on the capital, ‘it’s not just the West End’ that is suffering. 

Tourists ‘travel around the country – and all these places are struggling because tax-free shopping has stopped’. 

VAT-free shopping allows tourists to claim back 20 per cent on their purchases. 

It was axed when the UK left the EU. Kwasi Kwarteng tried to reintroduce it in his ‘mini-Budget’ in September, but Jeremy Hunt, his replacement as Chancellor, reversed the plan. 

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