Though engagement across government departments and presenting health and economic evidence, the CBI played its part in the government reducing social distancing measures to help business reopen. With the two-metre social distancing rule in place many smaller businesses especially those in retail and hospitality could not reopen, as a result of our lobbying, more businesses can reopen helping the economic recovery of the UK.
FCA and Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) agree to work with industry on a sustainable model of accessing cash. Cash usage has decreased in the last few years and the COVID-19 crisis has accelerated this. Preserving access to cash is an essential element of Financial Services infrastructure. The CBI has discussed the importance of access to cash with regulators, government, and members and has pushed for a collaborative approach with industry. This announcement will ensure the framework for access to cash is discussed with industry and local communities.
With businesses keen to support the government COVID-19 response and the economic recovery efforts, the CBI called for the Business Secretary to set up business groups for consultation. Following this, Alok Sharma, announced the creation of five new business-focused groups to unleash Britain’s growth potential and create jobs to help the economy bounce back from the coronavirus pandemic. The CBI has been invited to sit on the taskforce on how to accelerate business innovation and adoption across the country.
Future of the Job Retention Scheme (JRS): through strong engagement with HM Treasury, the CBI was able secure two of business' asks for the future of the JRS - flexibility starting in July (earlier than expected) and that the business contribution builds up gradually to make it easier for businesses to pay. Read our latest update about the scheme.
Opening non-essential retail: prior to the goernment publishing guidance for the re-opening of non essential shops, the CBI fed into a consulation which helped shaped the guidance for retailers.
Large business loan scheme: the CBI lobbied HM Treasury directly to create a new loan scheme for all firms above £45m turnover. Firms below £250m can access £25m in loans, firms above £250m can access £50m. Following additional concerns from business, this has since been extended to maximum loans of £200m. Find out more about the financial support available for business.
BEIS workplace safety guidance: the CBI consulted on the workplace safety guidance to ensure the measures worked practically for business.
Trade Credit Insurance (TCI) Guarantee: following the CBI lobbying HM Treasury and BEIS to support industry proposals for a reinsurance backstop for TCI, the government confirms the Trade Credit Insurance Guarantee. This means the TCI will be at affordable levels, supporting the restart for business. Find out more here.
'Bounce back' loans for small businesses: the CBI called for an acceleration in support to distressed firms and outlined a comprehensive range of measures aimed to stave off firm closures and job losses. This led to the 100% government guaranteed 'bounce back' loans for under £50k for small businesses. Read more about the measures here.
Coronavirus Large Business Interruption loan scheme: the CBI lobbied and consulted extensively on the design of the scheme to ensure the medium-sized businesses had access to loans.
Job Retention Scheme extension: the CBI successfully persuaded HM Treasury to extend the Job Retention Scheme to the end of June to avoid a cliff-edge ending of the support and protect millions of jobs.
As the economy restarts, we want to use this opportunity to not simply build back to normal – but build back better than before. Our national revival plan includes:
• Putting health first: health will remain a driving consideration, so business’ work will be critical
• A unified voice: to ease confusion, UK nations and organisations should speak with one voice
• A new vision: to ensure economic stability in a changed global environment, the UK must focus on driving sustainable growth and tackling regional inequality
• Learn from the crisis and act fast: we will encourage the government to act quickly to find new solutions to age-old challenges, from infrastructure to education
• Backed by immediate action: we will develop, through consultation with our members, practical steps that business and government can take urgently.
Our members are our mandate. Because we have members of all sizes and in all sectors and regions, when we talk – government listens. As a not-for-profit organisation, we exist to champion businesses like yours, but we can only continue to do that with your support.