Rishi Sunak drops VAT for hospitality to 5% until 2021

The Chancellor’s statement today revealed a significant focus on jobs with a number of schemes launched to try to stop a spike in unemployment over the coming months. He has also temporarily dropped VAT to 5% for the hospitality sector. 

Chancellor Rishi Sunak revealed the government’s “Kickstart scheme”, which directly plays employers to create new jobs for any 16 to 24-year-old at risk of long-term unemployment.

He said: “There will be decent jobs – with a minimum of 25 hours per week paid at least to the National Minimum Wage.
“I urge every employer big or small to hire as many kickstarters as possible.”

Sunak said he would cut VAT from 20% to 5% for the hospitality and tourism sectors from July 15 to January 12. The temporary move is aimed at helping the UK to see pubs, restaurants, cafes and B&B’s “bustling again”.

Sunak also said he wanted to create Green jobs. He revealed a £2 billion Green Homes Grant and he said he would release £1 billion of funding to improve the energy efficiency of public sector buildings.

He said: “It’s a £3 billion green jobs plan to save money.”

In addition, companies will get £2,000 each to encourage them to hire apprentices. He said firms will also get £1,500 for apprentices over 25. Employers can also get £1,000 to take on trainees, and the government will provide £100 million to create places on Level 2 and 3 courses. A total of £250,000 will go towards supporting careers advisors.

He also announced a new job retention bonus for employers who bring back furloughed staff, with employers given £1,000 for every staff member they bring back from furlough. 

He said: "If you are an employer, and you bring back someone who was furloughed, and you continuously employ them through to january, then we will pay you £1,000 for this employee."

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