Chancellor Rishi Sunak has warned that the economic impact of coronavirus could be felt for years to come.
Sunak has been tasked with implementing measures to support businesses, sole traders and partnerships through such a tough economic period.
Those measures have included the furlough scheme and a series of grants and loans designed to ease cashflow issues.
And though hopes are high that the UK can begin its recover in 2021, Sunak says that the current “economic emergency” will endure, with official forecasts now predicting the biggest economic decline in 300 years.
The UK economy is expected to shrink by 11.3% this year and not return to its pre-crisis size until the end of 2022, while Government borrowing will rise to its highest outside of wartime to deal with the economic impact.
The Office for Budget Responsibility reports that the number of unemployed people expected to surge to 2.6 million by the middle of next year, with unemployment rate set to peak at 7.5%.
UK GDP forecasts show a big decline of 11.3% in 2020, but Sunak s confident that “extraordinary measures” being taken by the Government can protect jobs and livelihoods.
The government has subsidised the wages of employees unable to work due to the pandemic, in an effort to protect jobs.
It said extending these schemes to next March meant 300,000 fewer people would be out of work.
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