The Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Rt Hon. Rishi Sunak MP, has set out the Government’s plan to revive the economy and protect, support and create jobs.
Firstly, the Chancellor acknowledged that the furlough scheme has been a lifeline for millions of workers across the UK. However, he was clear that it must end as planned in October – it cannot continue indefinitely.
Therefore, to help companies to retain employees when the furlough scheme ends, a new job retention bonus has been announced. The Government will reward employers who bring back workers from furlough with £1000 per employee. I am sure that this will be a very welcome for many local businesses struggling to retain their employees following this crisis.
A new £2bn kickstart scheme will pay employers to create jobs for thousands of young people, aged 16-24, who are at risk of long-term unemployment. The Government will pay the wages for those young people who are eligible for the scheme for the first six months of their employment. There will be no cap on the number of ‘kickstarters’ that a company can take on.
The Government will also invest heavily in traineeships and apprenticeships Firms will be paid £1000 if they can take on a new trainee, and £2000 if they can hire an apprentice. £100m has been pledged to fund places in high-demand sectors such as engineering, construction, and social care.
The number of work coaches in job centres will double, and a new scheme is being developed to support the long-term unemployed with a £1bn investment made in the Department for Work and Pensions.
The threshold for paying stamp duty will be raised temporarily from £125,000 to £500,000 until 31st March 2021. This will mean that the average stamp duty bill will fall by £4,500.
The Chancellor has also announced a £2bn green homes grant. Homeowners and landlord will be able to apply for vouchers to make their homes more energy efficient. £1bn is also being invested in improving energy efficiency in public sector buildings.
To help our hospitality sector, the Government will cut VAT on all food, accommodation, and attractions from 20% to 5% next Wednesday.
Finally, from August, everyone in the UK will be given an ‘eat out to help out’ discount at participating restaurants, cafes and pubs. This initiative will offer customer discounts worth up to £10 per head when they eat out from Monday to Wednesday during August.
These new measures are unprecedented and shows that this Conservative Government is serious about protecting jobs getting our economy back on its feet.
For a summary of the detail announced, please see here:
For the announcements in greater detail, please see here:
To read the Chancellor’s speech in the House of Commons, please see here: