Rishi Sunak extends UK furlough scheme to end of April 2021

CHANCELLOR Rishi Sunak extends the UK furlough scheme to the end of April 2021 with the government continuing to contribute 80 per cent towards wages.

Sunak, in his announcement on Thursday, December 17, said this move gives businesses and employees across the UK a little more certainty as the country moves into the New Year.

This will allow UK companies hurt by the pandemic to put staff on temporary leave for longer, with the government also confirming the extension of the government-guaranteed Covid-19 business loan schemes until the end of March.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said: “Our package of support for businesses and workers continues to be one of the most generous and effective in the world – helping our economy to recover and protecting livelihoods across the country.

“We know the premium businesses place on certainty, so it is right that we enable businesses to plan ahead regardless of the path the virus takes, which is why we’re providing certainty and clarity by extending this support, as well as implementing our Plan for Jobs.”

He also tweeted:  “We are extending furlough until the end of April 2021. We will continue to pay 80% towards wages of unworked hours – giving businesses and employees across the UK certainty into the New Year.”

The announcement appears to signal that COVID restrictions will be around for longer, especially after the announcement of tier changes this afternoon.

Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, said: “While our loan schemes have provided a vital lifeline to millions of firms across the country, we know that business owners need additional certainty as we head into the New Year.

“Extending government-backed loan schemes will give companies right across the UK the finance they need to support, protect and create jobs as we build back better from the pandemic.”

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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com.