Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Yvette Cooper (pictured) said: 'We will continue to monitor the situation and retain the option to legislate in future if necessary, but we do not propose to legislate against upward-only rent review clauses at present.
However, she did hold out the prospect of legislation to make it easier for retailers to sublet surplus space. 'We intend to undertake a review of the law of assignment and subletting, with the aim of easing the position for tenants while not jeopardising property investment, including looking at legislative options,' she said.
The British Retail Consortium had been leading the charge for a ban on upward-only rent reviews. Director-general Kevin Hawkins said: 'We particularly welcome the Government's commitment to review the law on assignment and subletting and to retain the option to legislate on upward-only rent reviews in the future. In the meantime, the property industry's performance will be under close scrutiny.'