Mulberry slams tax rate

MULBERRY chief executive Godfrey Davis has blamed the stringent rates of tax for his refusal to open a second factory in the UK.

The leader of the luxury goods retailer, famed for its handbags, said he had been put off opening a second plant to supplement Mulberry’s Somerset factory due to the impact of rising national insurance rates.

“Over the past 10 years the political and economic climate has not been conducive to investing in the UK,” Davis said in an interview with Drapers magazine.

Godrey called on the government to introduce “NI holidays” for manufacturers, saying an ongoing tax break would be a greater incentive than traditional golden handshakes used to attract manufacturers from overseas.

Employer NI contributions are set to rise to 13.8 per cent from 12.8 per cent for those earning more than £136 a week in April.