To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment she has made of the impact of recent rent increases in the south east region on small retailers; and if she will make a statement. 
The Department has not been asked to make such an assessment since rent increases incurred by small businesses are not subject to control by the Government.
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans her Department has to provide assistance for small businesses facing closure as a result of rent increases; and if she will make a statement. 
Rent increases incurred by small businesses are determined by market forces and are not subject to control by the GovernmentBusiness Links can provide advice and support for small businesses facing difficulties or those wanting to diversify as a result of a crisis. Business Links can also advise small businesses on a number of disaster management strategies. Business Link services are either free or charged at affordable rates. Small businesses in difficulty can contact their local Business Link operator by telephone on 0845 600 9006 or via the website www.businesslink.org.