Coronavirus Business Advice for Local Businesses

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Plymouth business news

12th March 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Business Support

We are aware that Coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing concern for businesses and although there have been no confirmed cases in Plymouth as of yet, the government advice to businesses is to be prepared and to prevent the spread of any potential airborne viruses as much as possible.

If your business is feeling the impact of this economic shock, you’re in need of advice of how to prepare and communicate with your staff, or are looking for the latest guidance for dealing with customers in your business please find below a useful guide to information available, which can also be found on the Invest Plymouth COVID-19 business support page.

  • Coronavirus Government response Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. Find out the latest government advice and NHS guidance on how to protect yourself and others
  • FSB advice to small businesses Advice and guidance on reducing risks of disruption from the COVID-19 virus to you and your business
  • Coronavirus information for the public: Find out the number of cases and risk level in the UK, what to do if you’re a returning traveller and what the government is doing about the virus
  • Coronavirus guidance to employers and businesses This guidance will assist you In providing advice to your staff on COVID-19, how to help prevent the spread of respiratory infections, what to do if someone suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 has been in business settings and actions to take if staff come into contact with someone who is self-isolating or is a possible or confirmed case of COVID-19
  • British Chamber of Commerce in China Coronavirus outbreak information page: Information sourced and updated daily from UK and China government, news outlets, schools and businesses including useful information for UK nationals in China

Simple steps you may want to take:

  • Refresh your business continuity plan and ensure clear communication of processes should self isolation be required
  • If staff are able to work from home ensure that they have the necessary equipment and tools to be able to do so should they need to self-isolate
  • Ensure staff contact details are up to date should people need to work from home
  • Increase messaging around hand washing, make sure toilets have soap available and that antibacterial wipes are available to clean down desks and working areas regularly

If your business is facing a significant impact, or you would like to discuss any concerns you have please get in touch with our Economic Development team here (link to get in touch page on website)

Our COVID-19 business support page on the Invest Plymouth website is being regularly updated with the latest advice and information.

Budget 2020 Response to COVID-19

Yesterday the government announced a number of measures in response to COVID-19 to support businesses. Below is an overview of the announcement made. As yet no information has been shared to communicate how these measures will be rolled out. Once more is known we will share on the Invest Plymouth website COVID-19 page, and communicate with you.  

Public safety is the government’s top priority in its response to COVID-19 and it has taken firm and comprehensive action, consistent with the best scientific evidence.

As well as being focused on safety and the public health response to the outbreak, the government has recognised that people are concerned about the effect it will have on their livelihood, and business are concerned about reduced demand, potential disruptions to supply chains and export markets, and to their workforce during this temporary period.

The Budget announced a £12 billion plan to provide support for public services, individuals and businesses, whose finances are affected by COVID-19. This included a £5 billion COVID-19 response fund to ensure the NHS and other public services receive the funding they need to respond to the outbreak as the situation develops, and recover and return to normal afterwards.

For individuals it includes extending Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for those advised to self-isolate, and those caring for others who self-isolate, and support through the welfare system for those who cannot claim SSP, as well as a hardship fund.

Finally, the government will support businesses that experience increased costs or disruptions to their cashflow. This includes expanded Business Rates reliefs, a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to support up to a further £1 billion lending to SMEs, a £2.2 billion grant scheme for small businesses, and a dedicated helpline for those who need a deferral period on their tax liabilities.


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Keep up to date with news and advice on our COVID-19 business support page