Welsh businesses urged to check their eligibility for lockdown grant funding
Welsh Government lockdown funding is now open and the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Wales is urging businesses to log on and check their eligibility for support.
The firebreak lockdown is causing significant problems for businesses that have already struggled to make it through an incredibly difficult year.
- Business can check their eligibility here
The lockdown funding is designed to help businesses weather the storm that we are currently dealing with, so that they can reopen and make the most of the run up to Christmas from 9th November onwards.
Businesses can now apply for funding from the third phase of the Welsh Government’s Economic Resilience Fund (ERF).
Last week, the Welsh Government announced it was doubling this phase of the fund, making nearly £300m available to support businesses that continue to be affected by Covid-19.
As a result of the “firebreak”, which began on Friday 23 October and continues until Monday 9 November, a range of businesses have had to temporarily close their doors or reduce their operations. The third round of the ERF will ensure further help for businesses across Wales.
To date, the fund has supported more than 13,000 businesses. This has helped to protect in excess of 100,000 jobs which might otherwise have been lost. The ERF is part of the Welsh Government’s £1.7bn plus support package for businesses and complements support schemes available from the UK Government.
The latest phase of the ERF will see:
- Micro businesses, SMEs and larger firms able to apply for funding from the £100m Business Development grant fund. £20m of this is ring-fenced for tourism and hospitality businesses.
- Payments of up to £5,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses that are required to close and which occupy a property with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000. Businesses will be automatically eligible for this funding, but will need to register and update their details via Business Wales or their Local Authority to receive it.
- Payments of £1,000 for businesses that are eligible for Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) and occupy a property with a rateable value of £12,000 or less. While a business will be automatically eligible for this payment, they will need to register and update their information and bank details via Business Wales or their Local Authority to access funding.
- Businesses qualifying for this grant will also be able to apply for additional support if they have been forced to close during fire break. Qualifying businesses subject to local restrictions prior to the fire break will also be able to apply for an additional amount of financial assistance.
- Eligible businesses that do not qualify for business rates linked grants are able to apply for awards of up to £2,000 from a £25m discretionary fund via their local authority.
Economy Minister Ken Skates said: “The latest phase of the Economic Resilience Fund will provide almost £300m of crucial support to businesses affected by the firebreak which is absolutely necessary to slow down coronavirus.”
“We know this is a difficult and challenging time for our business community and that is why we are more than doubling the amount available for this round of the fund.”
“From today, businesses will be able to apply for support and we will be working hard to get money out of the door as quickly as possible.”
“As a Welsh Government, we are doing all that we can to protect jobs and help firms through the pandemic and against the uncertain back drop of the end of the EU transition period.”
“I would also like to thank local authorities and the Welsh Local Government Association who we are working closely with to ensure we can get this important support to businesses.”
Ben Francis, FSB Wales Policy Chair, said:
“There has rarely been a more challenging time to run a business and this financial support is designed to support those firms that will either be forced to close or will be significantly impacted by the lockdown.
“I can’t stress enough how important it is that businesses in Wales check their eligibility for these grants and to either register or apply with their local authority. This funding is there to support you through this difficult time and I hope that as many people as possible will benefit from it.”
Flintshire Council is administrating parts of the grants related to business rates, and is accessible via https://www.flintshire.gov.uk/en/Business/Advice-and-guidance/COVID-19-Advice-for-Businesses.aspx
For more information and to apply for funding: https://businesswales.gov.wales/coronavirus-advice/
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