In what is a fast moving situation, further to the business support measures announced by the Chancellor in last weeks Budget, yesterday he went much further in the support being offered and provided by the UK Government:
• Up to £330 billion of loans and guarantees to support businesses will be made available, hopefully from the start of next week. All businesses regardless of whether small, medium (SMEs) or large will be able to access loans backed by the Bank of England (if large) or the Business Interruption Loan Scheme (small or medium).
• For SMEs, the loans available will be up to £5m from the £1.2m originally announced in the Budget last week, with the first 6 months of such loans being interest free.
• To help with cash flow, grants of up to £10,000 will be available to approximately 700,000 of businesses that qualify for Small Business Rate Relief.
The hospitality, leisure and retail sectors have experienced a significant reduction in demand for their services, and so support measures aimed specially at these sectors include:
• Regardless of their size, ALL hospitality, leisure and retail businesses in England will receive a 100% business rates holiday for the next 12 months
• In addition, hospitality, leisure and retail businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000 can receive a grant of up to £25,000.
• Planning regulations will be relaxed to allow pubs and restaurants to start providing a takeaway service without a planning application.
We still await the specifics of how these measures will be delivered and will provide ongoing updates both through our usual communication channels as well as to our clients directly as relevant to them over the coming days.
In addition, as announced in the Budget, Time to Pay arrangements are available for businesses of all sizes and in all sectors, should there be problems with cash flow and paying relevant taxes to HMRC.
It is likely that more will be announced in the coming days and weeks as the Chancellor was clear that further support is required.
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