Businesses in the South East – including the Isle of Wight – have benefited from more than £7.4billion of government support to protect and support jobs across the region, according to new figures released today (Thursday).
More than 184,000 loans have supported businesses across all sectors, protecting jobs. But the retail and construction sectors have benefitted the most, demonstrating how government support helped those businesses that were impacted hardest by the pandemic, helping to keep people in work.
Similarly, the Self Employment Income Support scheme has benefitted business people across all sectors, with 292,000 people in the South East benefitting from SEISS, with an average claim of £2,700.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, said:
“We have provided unprecedented support for businesses and workers up and down the country, protecting jobs and livelihoods.
“Throughout this crisis my priority has always been to protect jobs, and at the Winter Economy Plan, we provided additional help to get businesses through the months ahead.”
The Chancellor also announced on Friday that the government’s Job Support Scheme will be expanded to protect jobs and support businesses required to close their doors as a result of coronavirus restrictions, alongside increasing the cash grants to businesses in England shut in local lockdowns to support with fixed costs. These grants are linked to rateable values, with up to £3,000 per month available, compared to the up to £1,500 every three weeks which was available previously.
Alok Sharma, Business Secretary, said:
“We have delivered one of the most generous and comprehensive packages of support in the world, protecting millions of jobs and saving thousands of businesses.
“I know that times are tough for many sectors, employees and their families, but we will continue to stand with businesses to help them build back better as we kick-start our economic recovery.”
As part of the Winter Economy Plan, the Chancellor announced that more than a million businesses who took out a Bounce Back Loan will now receive further protection from the COVID crisis through flexible repayments, under the new Pay as You Grow system, which gives businesses more time to repay.
The Winter Economy Plan will continue to protect jobs and help businesses through the uncertain months ahead as we adopt a new response to the virus, including through extending the Self Employment Income Support Scheme and 15% VAT cut for the hospitality and tourism sectors