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To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the adequacy of the (a) loan schemes and (b) other fiscal support available for businesses (i) of different sizes and (b) in different sectors during the covid-19 outbreak.
The Government has announced unprecedented support for business and workers to protect them against the current economic emergency including almost £300 billion of guarantees – equivalent to 15% of UK GDP. On 12 May the Government published new statistics that show businesses have benefitted from over £14 billion in loans and guarantees to support their cashflow during the crisis. This includes:
· 268,000 Bounce Back Loans (BBL) for small businesses, worth £8.3 billion
· 36,000 loans worth over £6 billion through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) for SMEs
· £359 million through the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) for large firms
Figures from the Bank of England show that over £18.7 billion has been distributed to large firms through the Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF). Together, these schemes ensure almost all viable UK businesses can apply for a government backed loan.
In addition, the Government has implemented a range of further measures which are providing support to millions of businesses of all sizes and across sectors, including:
· The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) – now extended until October
· A 12-month business rates holiday for all eligible retail, leisure and hospitality businesses in England
· Grant funding for small businesses, and retail, leisure and hospitality businesses
· VAT deferral for up to 12 months
· The Time To Pay scheme, through which businesses in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, can receive support with their tax affairs
· Protection for commercial leaseholders against automatic forfeiture for non-payment until June 30 2020