Wednesday, 18 November 2020
Department of Trade, Enterprise and Employment
Covid-19 Pandemic Supports
I propose to take Questions Nos. 39 and 40 together.
Budget 2021 provides a significant package of tax and expenditure measures to build the resilience of the economy and to help vulnerable but viable businesses across all sectors including a new payment structure for the PUP and amendments to the EWSS.
We are providing more and cheaper loan finance through MicroFinance Ireland, SBCI and the new €2bn Credit Guarantee Scheme. We have also announced a six-month reduction in the VAT, going down from 23% to 21% together with a range of additional public capital investment measures to support the domestic economy.
Details of the wide range of COVID-19 supports available are available on my Department’s website at .
The Restart Grant Plus scheme closed as of 31 October and has effectively been superseded as part of Budget 2021 measures by the COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) operated by the Revenue Commissioners. The CRSS offers a targeted, timely and temporary sector-specific support to businesses forced to close or trade at significantly reduced levels due to COVID- 19 of up to €5,000 per week.
A number of minor revisions and updates were made to the NSAI’s COVID-19 Workplace Protection and Improvement Guide, COVID-19 Retail Protection and Improvement Guide, and COVID-19 Shopping Centre Recovery and Protection Guide in recent weeks. This was to take into account level 5 restrictions in the face of growing transmission rates of the virus.
The documents are intended to consolidate practical guidance that is available at time of writing on how to manage business continuity during the COVID-19 pandemic. It addresses risks to both workers and the public and offers guidance on how businesses can continue to trade in a manner that is safe for both employees and the public.