Latest Government support for business revealed

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, outlined enhancements to earlier announcements on public services and business support, to provide an economic response, which “will be one of the most comprehensive in the world”. Please find below our summary of the latest government update regarding funding.



We have detailed guidance on each of these areas in our dedicated Coronavirus Resource Hub:

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

Rates Relief

Time to Pay

Deferral of VAT

Emergency changes to insolvency law

Budget 2020

On 17 March 2020 Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced £330bn worth of support designed to help businesses survive the coronavirus crisis. Importantly, he also promised that if all of this was not enough, he would do whatever it takes for the economy to survive against the coronavirus impact.

New measures announced since the Budget include:

  • Government-backed guaranteed loans at “attractive rates”, with a £330bn pot available to firms which need money to pay rent, suppliers, staff or purchase stock.
  • A new lending facility launched with the Bank of England will support larger companies.
  • SMEs able to borrow up to £5m with no interest due in first six months, this has increased from the £1.2m announced in the Budget.
  • Retail, leisure and hospitality companies will be exempt from business rates for a whole year, and firms in this sector with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000 will be given a cash grant of up to £25,000.
  • Small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief.

He also said that ministers were in talks to create support packages for airlines and airports.

Help with tax liabilities: Time to pay extended

The time to pay initiative is an agreement negotiated between SMEs and the Treasury which allows firms to have debt collection suspended when they can’t afford to pay their tax bill.

It was also announced on 17 March 2020 by Chancellor Rishi Sunak that HMRC will waive the 3.5% annual interest on deferred tax payments. This should alleviate some cash flow issues for businesses in the short term at least.

Time to pay arrangements are agreed on a case-by-case basis and are tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities. These businesses can contact HMRC’s new dedicated Coronavirus helpline from 11 March 2020 for advice and support, see below.

HMRC tax helpline

To ensure ongoing support, HMRC has made a further 2,000 experienced call handlers available to support firms and individuals when needed. For Time to Pay support if you are concerned about being able to pay your tax due to Coronavirus, call HMRC’s dedicated helpline on 0800 0159 559.

Supporting our clients

MHA Moore and Smalley can provide the support and guidance to help review your business, provide advice on accessing support and assist with identifying options for cash flow needs.

A key review is to revisit current forecasts/projections for the year ahead and consider the impact the current business environment may have on these forecasts and more importantly cash flow, the lifeline of any business. We can provide support in preparing forecasts/projections to assist with decision making and applying for financial support where needed.

For more information on Covid-19 please make sure to check out our Covid-19 Hub for coronavirus guidance and planning below: