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Updated 2 April 1.30pm 

The Department for the Economy has announced a range of support packages for businesses throughout Northern Ireland via the NI Executive which is explained in further detail via the links below.

​Invest NI can also provide advice and support through its Business Support Line on T. 0800 181 4422

We understand that many businesses have questions regarding tax and we would like direct you to GOV.UK  or the HMRC helpline on T. 0800 0159 559 for guidance.

Support Package

Summary of Additional Support Announced for Businesses & the Self Employed

On 20 March, the Chancellor announced new steps to provide support for businesses affected by the coronavirus.

These measures include:

> Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

> Deferral on VAT payments

> Increase in the Universal Credit allowance

> Extension to the interest-free period for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Click here for more information.  

Business Support Grant Schemes

The Northern Ireland Executive has announced two grants will be available to local businesses impacted by the coronavirus.  

> A grant of £10,000 will be provided to all small businesses who are eligible for the Small Business Rate Relief Scheme (ie all businesses with a NAV up to £15,000). This will benefit around 27,000 businesses.

Click here for more information on the Grant including a Portal to upload your bank details. A helpline is also operational T. 0300 200 7809

For rental properties, the scheme is being designed to benefit the small businesses and not the landlord or managing agent who is responsible for paying the rates. For this reason, no grant payments are being automatically issued to landlords or managing agents of properties with a rateable value of £1,590 or less. Landlords, managing agents and small businesses in this situation should not use the Small Business Grant Support online form to register for the scheme, but should wait until a new online form for rental properties is made available in the coming days.
Click here for more information.   

> A grant of £25,000 will be provided to companies in the retail, tourism and hospitality sectors with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000. This should assist 4,000 business.

Click here for more information.  

Support available through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those employees that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis.

Click here for more information.  

KPMG is facilitating a Job Retention Scheme Webinar on Thursday 2 April at 12.15pm. Click here to register.

NI Chamber is also hosting a live webinar, in partnership with Pinsent Masons, on Thursday 9 April. The webinar will provide an update on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and other measures employers are considering during this uncertain period in dealing with short term and longer term employment structures, including dealing with the uncertain areas under the CJRS.

Please note, this is for NI Chamber members only.

 Click here for more information. 

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme for Small Businesses

A new temporary Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, aims to support primarily small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) to access bank lending and overdrafts.

The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80 per cent on each loan (subject to a per-lender cap on claims) to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs. The government will not charge businesses or banks for this guarantee, and the Scheme will support loans of up to £5 million in value.

Businesses can access the first 12 months of that finance interest- free, as the government will cover the first 12 months of interest payments.

Click here for more information.  

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

CBILS is a new scheme, announced by the Chancellor at Budget 2020, that can provide facilities of up to £5m for smaller businesses across the UK who are experiencing lost or deferred revenues, leading to disruptions to their cashflow.

here for more information.  

Coronavirus: Deferred VAT payments

The government will be automatically deferring business payments for Valued Added Tax (VAT).

The deferral will apply from 20 March 2020 until 30 June 2020.

Click here for more information.  

Coronavirus: Deferred Income Tax Payments

If you’re self-employed, Income Tax payments due in July 2020 under the Self-Assessment system will be deferred to January 2021.

For Income Tax Self-Assessment, payments due on the 31 July 2020 will be deferred until the 31 January 2021.

Click here for more information.  

Coronavirus: Support for Paying Sick Pay to Employees

The government is bringing forward legislation to allow small and medium-sized businesses and employers to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19.

Click here for more information.  
Llyod's Banking Group Social Entrepreneurs Programme Support programme to help social entrepreneurs start and scale up social enterprise, community projects and impact-led organiosations across the UK. 

Click here for more information. 
The Facebook Small Business Grants Programme  Facebook is offering approximately £84 million in cash grants and advertising credits on its ad platform for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses.

Click here for more information. 
Facebook Business Hub Previously a resource limited to Facebook, employees and health experts, this will now be available for all businesses to access.

Click here for more information. 
Access to Finance The Institute of Directors (IoD), EY and Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber) are hosting a webinar on Thursday 2 April 2020 on Access to Finance during the crisis. Participants will hear from leading experts on finance in Northern Ireland and will have the opportunity to participate in a Q&A session

Click here for more information. 


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