LONDON (Reuters) – Britain today announced £1bn in aid for businesses most affected by the case spat generated by the Omicron edition affecting the country’s hospitality sector, among other businesses.
Finance Minister Rishi Sunak said he was confident the measures would help hundreds of thousands of families. But he added that if the government imposes further sanctions to slow down the Omicron version, it will respond “proportionately and appropriately”, which could further strain the economy.
Thanks to the support announced today, hospitality and leisure companies in the UK will be able to receive up to £6,000 for each of their assets, for a total of around £700 million in the new aid package.
The Finance Ministry said that the checks are equivalent to the checks given for housing when it is completely closed this year.
A fund £30m will be raised to support cultural organisations, £100m will be given to local authorities in England to support economic activities, and £150m will go to the governments of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The ministry said it would cover the cost of Covid-related sick leave for up to two weeks per employee for small and medium-sized businesses across the UK.
London borrowed more than £300 billion in the last financial year to help cushion the blow to the economy as a result of the coronavirus and government-imposed lockdowns.
(Translated by Luca Fratangelo in the Editorial Office in Gdansk, by Gianluca Semeraro in the Milan Office)