FORMER Chancellor Sajid Javid has urged businesses to make sure they access all the help on offer from the Government during the COVID-19 crisis.
It comes as current Chancellor Rishi Sunak pledged to ‘do whatever it took’ to support firms up and down the country and Mr Javid said it was important they accepted the assistance.
He added: “The coronavirus pandemic is the greatest public health challenge of our generation.
“I know how anxious many of those in our local community will be for the wellbeing of their family, neighbours and friends.
“I also know the depth of concern that business owners and their employees will feel over the future of their livelihoods.
“We have never, in peacetime, faced an economic fight like this one.
“That’s why the government has pledged to do whatever it takes to support the market, and our local economy.
“My team and I stand ready to assist in any way we can. Whatever the coming months bring, I am confident that we will get through it – together.”
Among the help is:
- A Statutory Sick Pay relief package for small-and medium-sized businesses, allowing them to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19.
- A 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses.
- Small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief, to help meet their ongoing business costs.
- A £25,000 grant for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses operating from smaller premises, with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000.
- A new temporary Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, offering loans of up to £5 million, to support primarily small and medium-sized businesses to access bank lending and overdrafts.
- A new lending facility from the Bank of England to help support liquidity among larger firms, helping them bridge coronavirus disruption to their cash flows through loans
- Support with tax affairs for businesses and self-employed people in financial distress through HMRC’s Time to Pay service.
- A new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be set up to help pay people’s wages. Employers will be able to contact HMRC for a grant to cover 80 per cent of workers’ wages, up to a total of £2,500 per worker each month for those who remain on payroll but are not working during the coronavirus outbreak. Every employer in the country will be eligible for the scheme.
- VAT payments due between now and the end of June will be deferred. No VAT registered business will have to make a VAT payment normally due with their VAT return to HMRC in that period.
Visit gov.uk/coronavirus for more information for individuals and companies.