Government extends Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to all SMEs

More than £90 million in finance has been approved since the launch of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), it has been revealed.

The figures come after the Chancellor Rishi Sunak said he will extend the scheme to “all businesses”, rather than just those unable to secure regular commercial financing.

Under the Government-backed initiative, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic can apply for emergency finance. The state will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80 per cent on each loan up to a maximum value of £5 million, as well as cover the first 12 months of interest and fees.

According to the latest figures, around £90 million in Government-backed loans have been secured by around 1,000 businesses. Until now, however, the scheme was only available to companies unable to secure regular corporate finance. From today, the Chancellor said all viable small businesses affected by Covid-19 will be “eligible should they need finance to keep operating during this difficult time”.

In related news, the Chancellor is also restricting lenders from “requesting personal guarantees” for loans under £250,000.

Meanwhile, a Government-backed scheme to provide financing to larger companies, operated by the Bank of England (BoE), has provided almost £1.9 billion of support to firms, while a further £1.6 billion has been committed.

Commenting on the figures, Mr Sunak said: “We are making great progress on getting much-needed support out to businesses to help manage their cashflows during this difficult time – with millions of pounds of loans and finance being provided to hundreds of firms across the country.

“And now I am taking further action by extending our generous loan scheme so even more businesses can benefit.”

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Posted in Blog, COVID-19 Knowledge Hub, SMEs, SMEs / Business.