Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:38 am on 10th December 2020.

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Photo of Jacob Rees-Mogg Jacob Rees-Mogg Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons 11:38 am, 10th December 2020

I am grateful for my hon. Friend’s approval of our decision to keep the overseas aid Committee going. She and the Chairman of the Committee made a compelling case in meetings with me and with others.

As regards the hospitality sector, the Government absolutely appreciate the enormous sacrifices that businesses and the hospitality sector have made to ensure that their premises are covid-secure. The decision to place restrictions on them has not been taken lightly, but for the clear need to suppress the coronavirus. It is right that the Government should support the sector how it can. The rent is being covered by cash grants worth up to £3,000 for each month a business is forced to close. We estimate that this will cover rent for around 90% of small and medium retail, hospitality and leisure properties in England. Pay is being covered by furlough, with employers only paying national insurance and pension contributions. Businesses facing reduced demand in tiers 2 and 3 can receive cash grants worth up to £2,100 a month, but, as I have already said to other hon. Members, it is quite right that this matter is brought to the Floor of the House, because this is how we carry out our historic responsibility of seeking redress of grievance.