SOUTH Dorset MP Richard Drax has called for a debate in Parliament to discuss the ‘vexed topic’ of how business rates are calculated.

He has been moved to act following concerns from traders.

Speaking in the House of Commons Mr Drax said: “Many of my constituents who run small businesses are coming to me more and more frequently to complain about how business rates are calculated, which is leading to crippling charges that in many cases result in shops emptying.

“Will my Right Honourable friend give us a debate on this vexed topic in the near future, which is affecting many businesses, not least in my constituency, but also right across the country?”

Ministers responsible for the Department for Communities and Local Government have been asked to respond.

Mr Drax said: ‘This is an important issue. I am keen that the Government looks at the way they are calculated as a matter of urgency.”