Business relief measures available to the timber industry

Business relief measures available to the timber industry

ARTICLE · By Timber Trade Federation · 18 March 2020

As the scale of the epidemic and the impact of efforts to ‘flatten the curve’ become clear, the Government announced £350bn in further support for businesses on 17 March 2020.

Most significant for the timber industry was the £330bn in state backed loans which will become available for all businesses through the banking system with the Bank of England. The fine print for the delivery and qualification of these loans is yet to be made clear, however below we’ve sought to highlight available information about these loans. We’ve also sought to provide information on the other forms of Government support which should be available to many businesses in the timber industry.

Statutory sick pay relief package for SMEs If you have fewer than 250 employees, you will be able to claim back statutory sick pay for any employee who has claimed statutory sick pay as a result of Covid-19. The mechanism for how this will work is still being arranged, however ensure you keep strong records during this time.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme A new temporary Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will launch next week to support businesses to access bank lending and overdrafts. The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% 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 6 months of that finance interest free, as government will cover the first 6 months of interest payments.

Support for businesses paying tax All businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through HMRC’s Time To Pay service. These arrangements are agreed on a case-by-case basis and are tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities. If you are concerned about being able to pay your tax due to COVID-19, call HMRC’s dedicated helpline on 0800 0159 559.

Find out more about the efforts by the Government to support business on the following link at GOV.UK. More information can also be found on We strongly encourage all members to join our LinkedIn group to stay up to date with the latest information, and ensure you are subscribed to our newsletter. Please do complete our survey on how Covid-19 is affecting your business so we can ensure we provide you the best support possible at this time.