News

Supporting businesses through the pandemic

Published: 24 Mar 2021 16:44

Latest business support information published.

Businesses have benefited from more than £1.94 billion in grants paid directly to businesses since March 2020. This is in addition to £965 million in coronavirus (COVID-19) non-domestic rates reliefs.

The total paid in grants includes sectoral schemes that were not available in the rest of the UK – such as funds for wedding sector businesses, independent brewers and ski centres and more than £40 million paid to newly self-employed people and mobile close contact service providers, such as beauticians and hairdressers.

Last week the First Minister announced that grants of up to £7,500 for retailers and up to £19,500 for hospitality and leisure businesses will be paid in April to help businesses re-open progressively.

These one-off restart grants will replace Strategic Framework Business Fund payments of up to £3,000 every four weeks, providing money up front to help with the costs of re-opening.

The Scottish Government is also extending 100% non-domestic rates relief for retail, leisure, hospitality and aviation businesses for the whole of the next financial year.

Finance Secretary Kate Forbes said:

“We know the last year has been extremely difficult for many of Scotland’s businesses, not least those in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors closed by law since December.

“Throughout this crisis we’ve done everything in our power to protect people’s livelihoods. Nobody wants businesses to be closed for a moment longer than absolutely necessary.

“These figures show that, as of mid-March, businesses have directly benefited from the majority of more than £3 billion allocated for business support since the start of the pandemic.

“I hope the support we have provided since the start of the pandemic – coupled with continued business rates relief and the prospect of April’s restart grants – will help them to weather the coming months as we gradually and safely remove restrictions.”

Background

Access the Scottish Government’s business support statistics

The next statistical update will be published on 7 April 2021.

More information about support for business is available at: https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/coronavirus-advice