More than 41,000 businesses in Wales benefited from over £1.4 billion of support to bounce back from COVID through government-supported loan schemes.
In addition, figures published reveal that under a third of employees in Wales (28%) benefited from the furlough scheme, as the UK Government moved quickly to support businesses across the whole country and protect jobs.
Loan schemes have supported businesses across all sectors. But the retail, construction and hospitality sectors, including hotels and restaurants, have benefited the most. This demonstrates how government support helped those businesses that were impacted hardest by the pandemic.
Similarly, the furlough and self-employed income support scheme has benefited firms across all sectors, with 108,000 people in Wales benefiting from SEISS.
This is alongside the UK Government’s commitment that the Welsh Government will receive a minimum of £1.1 billion in additional funding this year, on top of £2.9 billion confirmed since March to help provide support following the coronavirus pandemic. Companies across the region, including Recruit 121 Finance & Accounting Solutions, have benefited from this support.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, said:
Our package of support has helped more than 41,000 businesses in Wales to thrive and adapt through the pandemic, driving economic growth, and we will build on this through our Plan for Jobs.
Che Hokins, Recruit 121 CEO, said:
Acting responsibly in such a crisis is a tough balancing act between optimism, prudence and pain. The furlough scheme provides a great way of minimising the impact to the individual and helping the business to hold on to the talented people it will need when the storm passes. As a company we have certainly appreciated and benefited from this support from the UK Government.
The Chancellor set out his Plan for Jobs last month, which will support jobs with the Job Retention Bonus to help businesses keep furloughed workers, and expand Worksearch Support including a Flexible Support Fund and a £2 billion Kickstart scheme to subsidise jobs for young people
The government is also creating jobs in the construction and housing sectors through funding to decarbonise public sector buildings, and protecting jobs with VAT cuts for hospitality and tourism, as well as the Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme.
Secretary of State for Wales Simon Hart said:
The coronavirus pandemic has provided an unprecedented challenge but the UK Government has provided certainty for employers and workers to ensure that Wales’s economy is ready to bounce back from the pandemic.
We said we would do whatever it took to support the people and businesses of Wales and we have produced an unprecedented package of measures to deliver on that promise.
Our package of support schemes have supported the livelihoods of thousands across Wales and will help ensure our recovery is as swift as possible.
UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma said:
“were clear from the start of this crisis that no region would be left behind, and it is heartening to see the difference our support has made for businesses of all sizes in Wales.
As we rebuild from the pandemic, we will continue to prioritise jobs and skills, while placing the environment at the heart of our recovery.