Earlier this evening the UK Chancellor announced an economic intervention which is “unprecedented in the history of the British state” with measures to support the United Kingdom economy in the midst of COVID-19. Below are the key measures he announced for businesses:

  • The government is setting up a Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. The scheme will allow an employer to apply for a grant of up to £2,500 a month to cover 80% of the salary of those remaining as employees but not working. It will cover the cost of wages backdated to 1 March and will be available initially for 3 months with a review at that time. There will be no limit on the amount of funding that is available under the scheme.
  • The next quarter of VAT payments for businesses are deferred until the end of June with payment due at the end of the current financial year, an injection of £30 billion of cash to businesses.
  • The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme is extended to enable businesses to receive interest free loans for 12 months (previously announced as 6 months).
  • The 31 July instalment of income tax payment for the self-employed has been postponed until 31 January 2021.

The latest measures are in addition to those outlined by the Chancellor on 17 March 2020 (reported by us UK Chancellor’s latest measures in response to COVID-19).