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East Midlands Chamber News

Chamber welcomes new coronavirus ‘micro-loan’ scheme

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has today confirmed the introduction of a new ‘micro-loan’ scheme to help small businesses hit by the coronavirus crisis.


The latest intervention, which is due to go live next week, will give smaller firms access to 100% Government-backed loans of up to £50,000 within days of applying.


It comes after concerns were raised about the slow and burdensome application process that businesses have faced when trying to access existing coronavirus rescue schemes.


Firms wanting to apply will have to fill out a simple, two-page online self-certification form, which the Government hopes will unblock the backlog of applications being held up because of credit checks and lenders’ staffing levels.


Commenting, Chris Hobson, Director of Policy at East Midlands Chamber (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire), said: “This is another welcome intervention from the Chancellor.


“Although the Government has already made a significant amount of financial support available to businesses which need it, many have struggled to access it because of the sheer volume of applications being made, the delays in processing them and inconsistencies in the way different lenders are approaching the various loan schemes. 


“In the current situation, every day of delay is having a critical impact on businesses which need funding to ease their cashflow and wage pressures, so anything which can be done to quicken the flow of credit to the firms which need it most has to be a good thing.”