Continued Government support announced for individuals and businesses
Yesterday evening Rishi Sunak, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced a package said to be worth an additional £20 billion on top of the original budget announcements, to support businesses through these increasingly difficult times. Measures to be introduced include:
- An unprecedented government backed guaranteed loans totalling £330billion, for any business to cover rent, salaries, payment of suppliers and purchase of stock.
For larger business this will be available via a New Lending facility with the bank of England providing low cost, easily accessible commercial paper.
For small and medium businesses this will continue to be in the form of Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans announced in last week’s budget. However, businesses will be able to apply for loans of up to £5 million, an increase from the originally announced £1.2 million, with no interest due for the first 6 months.
Both schemes are aiming to available from the start of next week. Mr Sunak also went on to say that should the demand be greater the government will go further and provide as much capacity as needed. As more information becomes available we will keep you updated.
- Following the changed medical advice and concern for the impact on the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure sector there will be a 12 months business rates holiday for all shops, pubs, theatres, music venues, restaurants and any other hospitality or leisure business regardless of their rateable value. With increased grants of up to £25,000 available to those with a rateable value of less than £51,000.
- The budget previously announced the availability of cash grants of up to £3,000 for the smallest of businesses that qualify for small business rates relief – this has now been increased to up to £10,000.
- Again following the changed medical advice for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure sector, the government have stated those with business interruption insurance that covers pandemic situations is sufficient and will be able to make a claim. All insurance policies should now be reviewed to assess the availability of cover.
- Mortgage companies will offer 3 month mortgage breaks to those facing financial difficulties from Coronavirus.
- Government are also in the process of creating a new legal power in the COVID bill to offer whatever further financial support the Chancellor decides is necessary.
- In the next few days they are urgently convening meetings with business leaders and representatives for the most affected sectors to identify other specific opportunities to support them.
- Strengthening support for people and individuals with £0.5 billion to support the welfare system and £0.5 billion for hardship funds to local authorities.
It is expected that local authorities will administer the grants available and as soon as guidance is provided we will keep you updated.
Mr Sunak closing message was that in the coming days the government will no doubt go much further to support people’s financial security. In particular they will work with trade unions and business groups to develop new forms of employment support to help protect people’s jobs and their income’s through this period.
Throughout the whole announcement Prime Ministers Boris Johnston’s underlying message was the government will ‘do whatever it takes’.
We are here to support your business through these extremely tough times, and often getting advice early on means we can help reduce cash flow strain on your business.
This is the link to the government website which may be useful https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
If you have any questions in relation to the above or other issues facing your business due to COVID-19, please get in touch, we are only a phone call away.