News & Insights
As we get closer to a more “normal” society from 21st June, an array of government support schemes for businesses are set to be phased out or refreshed.
The measures, some of which have been ongoing since the pandemic first impacted the UK in March 2020, are worth around £66 billion.
Here is a timeline of when these support schemes and policies will be concluded by the government:
The government’s call for evidence concludes
The call for evidence is essentially an online survey that will be used to understand the current situation surrounding rent arrears and the relationship between landlords and tenants. The survey will help inform future initiatives to help protect commercial tenants after the eviction moratorium expires at the end of June.
Eviction moratorium expires
The eviction moratorium was introduced last year to prevent commercial tenants from being evicted by their landlords, regardless of any rent arrears or tensions that may have grown since March 2020. Its expiry on 30th June will be immediately followed by the implementation of new, but as yet unknown, initiatives that will be guided by the outcome of the government’s call for evidence.
Total business rates relief for the hospitality, retail and leisure industries ends
Firms in the hospitality, retail and leisure industries are exempt from paying business rates as they were hit hardest by the absence of customers due to pandemic restrictions. However, from 30th June, these businesses will be required to pay 33% of their rates until the end of March 2022.
The relief is capped at £2 million for non-essential businesses and at £105,000 for business that were eligible to open during the previous national lockdown.
Reduced VAT for hospitality and tourism sectors ends
In July 2020, the government announced businesses within the hospitality and tourism industries would have their VAT cut down from 20% to 5% on certain supplies and goods. After 30th September, VAT will apply at an interim rate of 12.5% through to March 2022 before a final stepped increase back to 20%.
This relief is applicable to all food and non-alcoholic beverages in hospitality venues, tickets for certain attractions and accommodation in hotels and resorts.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (otherwise known as the furlough scheme) was introduced by the government in March 2020. Employees, who were unable to work, could receive up to 80% of their wage from the government, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month per employee.
Though the Budget extended its application until the end of September, the input from the government will be reduced. Employers will be asked to contribute 10% of the employee’s wages, to make up the total 80% of wages covered, from the end July and 20% from the end August.
Business Recovery Loan Scheme ends
The business recovery loan scheme is available from the 6th April through to the 31st December. Its purpose is to provide businesses of all sizes with financial support through loans. Businesses will be able to borrow between £25,001 and £10 million during the period as long as they can prove that they have been financially impacted by the pandemic.
Deferred VAT payments must be paid back
Over £28 billion of VAT was deferred by businesses through February, March and April 2020. Originally, this was due to be paid back in full by March 2021. The government have since extended the payback period to early 2022 and granted eligible businesses the ability to pay back the deferred sum over a maximum of 11 smaller payments.
Restart grant scheme ends
These restart grants are awarded by local councils to support businesses as they start to re-open through the summer months.
Eligible businesses in the non-essential retail sector may be entitled to a cash grant of up to £6,000. Eligible businesses in the hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym sectors may be entitled to a cash grant of up to £18,000.