Government Support For Small Businesses
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced an “unprecedented package” of Government-backed loans worth £330 billion will be made available amid the coronavirus outbreak.
At a press conference on Tuesday 17th March 2020, he stated that "never in peacetime have we faced an economic fight like this one".
Announcing new measures to help the economy, Mr Sunak said he was extending the business rates holiday to all businesses in the hospitality sector and funding grants of up to £25,000 for smaller businesses.
He also announced homeowners would get a “three-month mortgage holiday” if they are suffering difficulties due to the outbreak.
Mr Sunak said: “The Government will stand behind businesses small and large."
He added: “I can announce today an unprecedented package of Government backed and guaranteed loans to support business to get through this.
“Today I am making available an initial £330 billion of guarantees, equivalent to 15 per cent of our GDP.
“That means any business who needs access to cash to pay their rent, their salaries, suppliers or purchase stock will be able to access a Government backed loan or credit on attractive terms.
“And if demand is greater than the initial £330 billion I’m making available today, I will go further and provide as much capacity as required. I said whatever it takes, and I meant it.”
Boris Johnson has said the Government will do “whatever it takes” to support the economy through the coronavirus outbreak.
“We must act like a wartime government and do whatever it takes to support our economy,” he told a Downing Street press conference.
“We support millions of businesses and tens of millions families and individuals through coming months.
“The Government must and will act with a profound sense of urgency.”
Mr Sunak explained that financial help will be delivered through two main schemes.
To support liquidity amongst larger firms a new lending facility with the Governor of the Bank of England will "provide low cost, easily accessible commercial paper".
To support lending to small and medium-sized businesses the business interruption loan scheme will be extended to provide "£5 million with no interest due for the first six months".
“Both of these schemes will be up and running by the start of next week," he added.
Mr Sunak also said that he is also taking “a new legal power” to “offer whatever further financial support I decide is necessary”.
CLICK HERE for the Government's COVID-19 guidance for employees, employers and businesses