This afternoon (Tuesday), the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak has announced a raft of economic measures to help individuals and businesses survive the on-going coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
- Business grants upto £10k
- Business rates holiday extended to all businesses
- Government-backed business loans package of £330bn
- Local authorities compensated for loss of business rates
- Support for hospitality and leisure businesses without pandemic insurance
- Three-month mortgage holiday
He said, “This is not a time for ideology…this government will give you all the tools you’ll need to get through this. We will do whatever it takes.”
Firstly, the Chancellor stated it will make available an unprecedented number of government-backed loans to help businesses survive. The loans package represents £330bn.
The newly announced ‘business interruption loan’ scheme which offers loans up to £5m will now require now interest due for first 6 months.
As well as access to finance, the Chancellor acknowledged that businesses need help with fixed costs.
For those retail, hospitality and leisure businesses that have an insurance policy that covers pandemics, they will be able to access those insurance policies.
But the Chancellor acknowledged that many of these businesses don’t have that insurance and he pledged that the government will be looking at additional ways it can support them.
He announced that the business rates holiday which formed part of the Spring Budget is now extended to all businesses in the retail, hospitality or entertainment sector.
Also in the budget, the Chancellor announced £3k cash grants available to the smallest businesses. Those cash grants have today been increased to £10k.
Local authorities will be fully compensated for these measures.
Thirdly, the Chancellor announced that he will strengthen support for people and individuals. Mortgage lenders will now offer a three-month mortgage holiday.
The Chancellor concluded, saying, “In the coming days I will go much further to support people’s financial security.
“We have never faced an economic fight like this one but we are prepared, we will get through this and we will do whatever it takes.”