// The government to offer increased support to small businesses in wake of Covid-19
// A new £520m Help to Grow scheme is set to be revealed in today’s Budget
// The package is expected to form part of Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s updated Plan for Jobs
Small businesses will be handed support under a new £520 million Help to Grow scheme to be revealed in today’s Budget.
The scheme will aim to strengthen their software and boost their productivity through use of cloud technology to management training.
The Treasury said the package was expected to form part of Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s updated Plan for Jobs.
The 130,000 businesses that are expected to be eligible for support will also be able to claim up to £5000 each to secure a 50 per cent discount on productivity-enhancing software.
A new online platform will also offer free advice on technology, such as cloud storage, that will help businesses save time and reduce costs.
“Our brilliant SMEs are the backbone of our economy, creating jobs and generating prosperity – so it’s vital they can access the tools they need to succeed,” Sunak said.
“Help to Grow will ensure they are embracing the latest technology and management training, fuelling our Plan for Jobs by boosting productivity in all corners of the UK.”
Sunak is also expected to offer 700,000 shops, pubs, restaurants, hotels and other businesses, grants of up to £18,000 each as part of a £5 billion rescue scheme.
The scheme aims to prevent mass bankruptcies for stricken businesses as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to hammer the economy.
Sunak has hinted at an extension to the furlough scheme but warned he will “level” with the public over the economic toll of the pandemic.