The Chancellor Rishi Sunak has extended the furlough scheme for another month, until at least April.
The furlough scheme was due to end in March, but the Chancellor has vowed to continue to “protect peoples jobs and livelhoods.”
The government will continue to pay 80% towards workers wages of unworked hours, Sunak said on Thursday.
The Chancellor said, “I can announce today that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will be extended by another month, until the end of April 2021 with employees continuing to receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked,” he says.
“Employers will be required to pay wages, National Insurance Contributions (NICS) and pensions for hours worked; and NICS and pensions only for hours not worked.
“The eligibility criteria for the scheme will remain unchanged as I have previously set out.”
“Our package of support for businesses and workers continues to be one of the most generous and effective in the world – helping our economy to recover and protecting livelihoods across the country.
“We know the premium businesses place on certainty, so it is right that we enable businesses to plan ahead regardless of the path the virus takes, which is why we’re providing certainty and clarity by extending this support, as well as implementing our Plan for Jobs.”
Business Secretary Alok Sharma said, “We know that business owners need additional certainty as we head into the New Year.
“Extending government-backed loan schemes will give companies right across the UK the finance they need to support, protect and create jobs as we build back better from the pandemic.”