Northumberland’s Labour Group says business support is going to be crucial to help the county’s business and tourism economy to recover form the Covid crisis.
Labour Group Shadow Cabinet Member Mark Purvis said: “As Keir Starmer says, we should all be immensely proud of the role British businesses has played during this pandemic. From keeping our shelves stacked and producing protective equipment, to helping to develop and distribute the vaccine.”
Labour is urging the government to use a portion of the £2bn in business rate relief that supermarkets have pledged to return to the Treasury to establish a Hospitality and High Streets Fightback Fund targeted at those firms that have been hardest hit throughout the crisis. Labour is also calling for the remainder to be used to immediately support self-employed people excluded from support throughout this crisis.
Mark continued: “We need the Chancellor to listen to business people and do the right thing by them. And we’re not just talking big business. Small and medium businesses are crucial for getting our business and tourism economy back on track. He needs to listen to businesses who are fighting for survival and come up with a proper plan for the months ahead which reflects the seriousness of the situation.
“After WW2, there was a resolve in the country to make things better and fairer. This is when the NHS was created, the welfare state introduced and an ambitious public housing plan got underway. This is the sort of commitment, git and determination we need to see form the government. This is what the people of our county and this country need and deserve.”
Keir Starmer said: “Securing our economy means supporting British business too. Businesses are the engine of our economy. They’re a source of good jobs, and prosperity; of pride and dignity.
“When businesses are forced to close, to pull out of our high streets or to leave communities they’ve been a part of for years; it doesn’t just affect profit, it affects people, our communities, and our country.
“When we come out of this crisis, I want Britain to be the best country to do business in, high-tech, high-skilled, high-paid, and looking to the future. Building in Britain – and trading with the world. But if we’re to do that, the Government needs to protect British businesses and to protect people’s jobs now.”