Business Support Measures If Lockdown Is Extended
05 February 2021
This is an update to our previous insight on 28 January 2021.
Following the announcement of the second lockdown in Guernsey, the Government’s Policy & Resources Committee is, with effect from 15 February, reintroducing business support measures for certain businesses sectors that are most heavily impacted by the lockdown. These measures include the payment of a grant and also the payroll co-funding scheme. This had initially been set at 80% of the minimum wage but following representation from industry, was increased to 100% of the minimum wage.
In a further development following the receipt of feedback from industry, the Government has, in its second media release, confirmed that it will not request repayment of any support provided under the co-funding arrangements for January and February. With the possibility of businesses having to repay support payments received under these arrangements, it was felt that businesses would be reluctant to make claims and instead would lay off employees. This would then mean that businesses might not be in a position to restart activity as soon as the lockdown is eased, thereby slowing future recovery.
These measures demonstrate that the Policy & Resources Committee is prepared to listen to industry and show flexibility in making urgent changes at a time of crisis and this is something to be welcomed.