Welsh businesses get further funding relief but more support still needed
There is some positive news for businesses in Wales, as the Welsh government announced further funding for those suffering from coronavirus restrictions, which has been applauded by business groups.
Since the start of the pandemic, the Welsh government has provided more than £2 billion to tens of thousands of businesses across Wales to help them through the crisis.
Now the businesses still affected will be able to claim up to £25,000 more in support to help meet ongoing costs. They can submit applications by the end of the month and they will receive between £2,500 and £25,000 depending on their circumstances. Funding will be calculated based on the size of the business and the type of restrictions they are under.
This latest support package will help businesses still affected by restrictions get through the crisis to the end of June, as they prepare for re-opening and more normal trading conditions.
The Federation of Small Business (FSB Wales) policy chairman, Ben Francis, said the news brings some welcome relief.
“Despite the disappointment at the gap in business support over the Senedd election period, many businesses will nevertheless breathe a sigh of relief at this new support from Welsh government," Mr Francis said.
“We hope that this will help stabilise those firms that are still dealing with the most serious economic consequences of coronavirus.
“We are pleased to see that guidance has been published following calls from FSB; this should help businesses adapt to the latest change in restrictions and ensure that they can trade safely and securely."
Despite the latest funding boost for businesses in Wales, the FSB said challenges will continue, without continued support in the near future, and that more will be needed.
“Whilst funding is welcome for those who face an immediate need, we know that going forwards businesses will continue to be restricted and face many challenges on the road to recovery and trading sustainably once again," Mr Francis noted.
“There remains much concern within the sector about what the coming weeks will hold and Welsh government needs to work with FSB Wales to support businesses to move to a place of profitability and sustainability."
While substantially more businesses can now reopen, Mr Francis encouraged everyone to support local and independent businesses whenever, and wherever they can, as community support is vital for economic recovery.
The latest funding support announcement comes as the Welsh government confirmed up to six people from six different households can now meet in indoor regulated settings, such as pubs and cafes, when they open from 17 May.