Shoplifters in Britain make off with goods worth almost £400,000 (approx. $637,000) every day, British retailers have said.

The year-on-year cost of theft of TVs, computer games, clothes and perfumes to high street stores up and down the country has soared from £99 million ($150 million) to £137 million ($218 million).

Stephen Robertson, of the British Retail Consortium (BRC), called on the Government, police and courts to do more to support businesses despite the potential impact of budget cuts on public services. "Retailers' extra investment in stopping crime has deterred a lot of opportunist thefts leaving a higher proportion of determined, organised thieves who take a greater value of goods each time they steal."

The figures were based on a survey of 54 retailers who employ more than 1.3 million staff and represent almost half of Britain's retail turnover.