COVID-19 SUPPORT: Daily Update – Tuesday 31 March 2020

COVID-19 SUPPORT: Daily Update – Tuesday 31 March 2020

Welsh Economic Reliance Fund

The Welsh Government has announced a £500 million Economic Resilience Fund to support firms, charities and social enterprises of all sizes in Wales.

Grants of £10,000 will be available to micro-businesses employing 9 people or less (including sole traders who employ staff). Grants of up to £100,000 will be available for small and medium-sized businesses with between 10 and 249 employees. Support for larger Welsh businesses will also be offered under the new scheme, with further details on this expected to follow.

Loans of between £5,000 and £250,000 will also be made available by the Development Bank of Wales to businesses which have been trading for more than two years. These loans will be fixed at 2%, with a 12-month interest and capital repayment holiday. Personal guarantees of 20% (up to £25,000) will be required for all loans and, for larger loans, a debenture will be required.

The new measures build upon the support already offered under the Welsh Government Business Grants, and the various reliefs and grants provided by the UK Government. The new scheme will come as welcome relief to those businesses which fall outside those sectors prioritised by the UK-wide support.

Further guidance on the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund

Updated guidance for the administration of the Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF) has been published. The schemes, available to businesses based in England, are administered by Local Authorities, with grants of up to £25,000 available to eligible businesses.

The revised guidance includes information on State Aid, monitoring and reporting requirements, details on “Spotlight” due diligence and post payment checks, and eligibility clarification for charities.

Full details of the SBGF and RHLGF, including links to useful resources, can be found here.

Tesco questions Welsh Government over Business Rate Relief

Tesco has asked for clarification from the Welsh Government over its decision to exclude larger properties from the 12-month business rates holiday offered to businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. The relief will only be available to eligible Welsh businesses which occupy a property with a rateable value of £500,000 or less. There is no cap on the rateable value of properties occupied by businesses based in England.

The decision will affect the largest retail, hospitality and leisure businesses currently operating in Wales. The Welsh Government announced on 30 March 2020 an Economic Resilience Fund, primarily targeted at those businesses who have not benefited from the support already available by the UK and Welsh Governments. This is expected to include support for larger Welsh business, though full details have not yet been announced.

Please see our daily updated Financial Support Guide for Businesses for futher information-  COVID-19 FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR BUSINESSES

For more information on any of the points raised, please contact our corporate team.

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