With the current extension of the furlough scheme set to end in April 2021 and with ‘no clear roadmap’ yet released for businesses to start trading at full capacity. The British Chamber of Commerce and TUC have urged the treasury to announce another extension to the scheme.
The cost of the furlough scheme has, so far, been £50bn but has protected jobs across the UK during the pandemic as workers have been urged to stay at home to save lives and protect the NHS.
Hannah Essex, Co-Director of the BCC has said ‘With the furlough scheme providing a lifeline to millions of employees across the economy, further action will be needed in order to avoid a damaging cliff edge for jobs and livelihoods after the scheme ends in just a couple of months.
“The government must learn lessons from last October, where the delay in extending the scheme at a time of tightening restrictions helped drive redundancies to a record high.’’
This has been echoed by Frances Grady, General Secretary of the TUC, ‘’The government must understand we need to work our way back to growth, and for that we need people in jobs. Otherwise we are going to end up with real, deep economic and social problems.”
With a month until Rish Sunak deliver the budget on March 3rd business leaders will be awaiting news from the treasury as to the next steps in the UKs economic recovery.