Chancellor Rishi Sunak has urged the public to support the hospitality industry with his new “eat out to help out” scheme, announced as part of yesterday’s £30 billion summer statement.
Speaking with talkRADIO’s Julia Hartley-Brewer, the Treasury chief said: “I wanted to try something different which hopefully will capture the imagination and remind us that we used to love going out.
“Our economy’s built on social consumption and try and help nudge people into rediscovering that.”
The programme is an attempt to protect two million jobs in the hospitality sector and offers a 50 per cent discount per head, up to £10 per diner, from Monday to Wednesday.
Asked what he would say to people who are anxious about returning to social settings, Mr Sunak praised the safety measures that businesses have implemented and said: “This is a new normal but a safe normal.”
“It’s only if we do that collectively as a nation that we’re going to be able to protect all of these jobs.”
However, the SNP’s Angus MacNeil has warned that the encouraging people to socialise could be risky.
The International Trade Select Committee chairman told Julia: “The Covid numbers globally are still rising and they’re still high. If something comes back from somewhere else and people are mixing that could be a way of passing Covid.”
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