Rishi Sunak will deliver an economic update on July 8, setting out the next stage of the government’s plan to secure recovery.
The Chancellor has stressed that this is not an emergency budget but a fiscal statement, designed to help businesses recover from Coronavirus lockdown.
Speculation on the content of the announcement is rife. One of the most credible sources is the CBI, who have worked closely with the Treasury throughout the pandemic.
In today’s daily coronavirus webinar, the CBI’s Director-General Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, is clear that she expects Rishi Sunak to focus on protecting and creating jobs.
She is hopeful that:
- There will be a continued form of wage subsidy for those sectors that cannot open
- A wage subsidy scheme that encourages businesses to create jobs
- Job coaches will be created within job centres to help people into work
- Apprenticeships will be stimulated
- “Helicopter money” may be considered. This concept is giving the public money/vouchers that has to be spent in hard hit industries like hospitality
Measures that can be delivered at scale and at speed are needed to support jobs. Some of that support may be sector specific – the recent £1.57 billion investment to protect cultural, arts and heritage institutions for example. The Prime Minister indicated that the funds were to safeguard the sector, keeping it “afloat and supporting staff whilst their doors remain closed and curtains remain down”.
Other sectors that may need urgent support include the Universities and Retail, Hospitality & Leisure venues that are as yet, unable to open.
The Chancellor will deliver his economic update as a “Financial Statement” in the Commons on Wednesday afternoon, after Prime Minister’s Question Time.