“We will not be defined by this crisis but by our response to it,” the Chancellor said as he set out his £30 billion plan for coronavirus economic recovery.
Unveiling the government’s “Plan for Jobs”, Rishi Sunak told MPs in the House of Commons that firms which have furloughed staff will receive a £1,000 bonus to keep workers in jobs.
He said the Jobs Retention Bonus could cost up to £9 billion if all furloughed workers are retained.
It comes as an attempt to avoid mass redundancies when state support is withdrawn at the end of the Job Retention Scheme in October.
In his 25-minute statement, Mr Sunak also announced:
– Plans to abolish stamp duty on properties up to £500,000 in England and Northern Ireland.
– An “eat out to help out” plan for dining out in August to boost the hospitality sector, with a 50 per cent discount per head from Monday to Wednesday up to a maximum discount of £10 per diner.
– A slash on VAT on food, accommodation and attractions from 20 per cent to 5 per cent, a tax cut worth up to £4 billion.
– A £2 billion scheme of taxpayer-funded work placements for 16-to-24-year-olds on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment.
– A £3 billion green package, with grants for homeowners and public buildings to improve energy efficiency.
– A £111 million programme of unpaid traineeships combining work experience with training.
Concluding, the Chancellor said: “It is an unambiguous choice to make this moment meaningful for our country in a way that transcends the frustration and loss of recent months.
“It is a plan to turn our national recovery into millions of stories of personal renewal.”
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