It's great news that the Welsh Government is extending the Wales Retail Relief scheme for 2015-16, helping retail businesses cut up to £1,500 off their rates.
Last year up to 11,000 small businesses in Wales - including businesses here in Newport - benefitted from the scheme, and hopefully even more will do so in 2015-16.
The opening of Friars Walk in November will be a shot in the arm for Newport. Alongside the big chains that are coming to the city, we've got some fantastic independent traders here. During the First Minister's recent event at the YMCA in Pill I asked him about the role that Welsh Government can play in supporting small businesses in the city.
It was heartening to hear the First Minister pledge his support for local business growth, and the extension of the Wales Retail Relief scheme demonstrates this policy in action. I'm proud that the Welsh Government recognises the importance of small and medium-sized enterprises which make such an important contribution to the local economy here in Newport.