Furlough Scheme Extended until End of March 2021

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced that the furlough scheme across the UK will be extended until the end of March 2021.

Furlough scheme extended until End of March 2021 f

"it is the case now and will remain the case until next March."

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has said that the furlough scheme will be extended until the end of March 2021.

The scheme was originally set to end at the start of November 2020, however, it was extended when Boris Johnson announced a second national lockdown.

Mr Sunak has now announced a further extension into 2021.

He said the scheme will pay up to 80% of a person’s wages up to £2,500 a month. Addressing MPs in the Commons, he said the policy will be reviewed in January.

Mr Sunak stated that his intention was “to give businesses security through the winter”.

He added: “The security we are providing will protect millions of jobs.”

The furlough scheme will apply throughout the UK.

He said: “The furlough scheme was designed and delivered by the government of the United Kingdom on behalf of all the people of the United Kingdom, wherever they live.

“That has been the case since March, it is the case now and will remain the case until next March.”

As part of the revised scheme, anyone made redundant after September 23 can be rehired and put back on furlough.

Self-employed people will receive more support, with the third grant covering November to January calculated at 80% of average profits up to £7,500.

In addition, Mr Sunak increased guaranteed funding for the UK’s devolved administrations by £2 billion to £16 billion.

Following the announcement, Wales First Minister Mark Drakeford welcomed it, saying:

“We’ve been calling for this for some time.

“At long last, businesses and workers have some certainty about this vital support scheme to help them get through the pandemic.”

Mr Sunak also stated that he needed to make “rapid adjustments” to the government’s economic response to the Covid-19 pandemic because of how the virus has spread.

He said the second lockdown had required a change in approach.

He told MPs: “And so given these changed public health restrictions and the economic trauma they would cause in job losses and business closures, I felt it best to extend the furlough scheme rather than transition at that precise moment to the new job support scheme.

“Political opponents have chosen to attack the government for trying to keep the economy functioning and to make sure the support we provide encourages people to keep working.

“And they will now no doubt criticise the government on the basis that we have had to change our approach. But to anyone in the real world that’s just the thing you have to do when the circumstances change.

“We all hope for the best but make sure we plan for any eventuality.”

Responding to criticism that the government should have taken measures sooner, Mr Sunak said:

“What I know is the support we’re providing will protect millions of jobs.

“What I know is that it’s never wrong to convey confidence in this country and our economy through our words and actions, and what I know is today’s announcement will give people and businesses up and down our country immense comfort over what will be a difficult winter.”

Mr Sunak said he would “leave it to the people” to decide whether the government’s actions were right.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”