Coronavirus: Welsh Government extends business rate relief, announced small business fund

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As part of what’s described as emergency support for businesses, the Welsh Government has announced:

  • Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or less will receive 100% business rate relief.
  • Pubs with a rateable value of between £51,000-£100,000 will have a £5,000 cut to their business rate bill.
  • £100million in grants for small businesses will be made available with details to be announced at a later date.

It comes after the UK Prime Minister advised the public to avoid visiting pubs, clubs, theatres and any crowded place as part of “social distancing” measures to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

There has been criticism of the move as it’s suggested businesses can’t claim business interruption insurance because a UK Government order officially closing them down hasn’t been issued.

Finance Minister, Rebecca Evans (Lab, Gower) said “every penny” of additional money from the UK Government relating to the pandemic would be used to support businesses in Wales, though she called for the UK Government to “provide a very significant support package for vulnerable businesses and their employees.”