COVID-19: measures for UK businesses Information for businesses and employers The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19. Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme goes live The government's Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme went live for applications from today (23 March). COVID-19 Business Measures - job retention and tax deferrals We set out a summary of the salary support and tax deferral schemes that were announced on 20 March 2020. UK facing 'worst recession in modern history' The UK economy is facing its 'worst recession in modern history'. Government and financial regulators tell banks to keep lending British banks must keep lending to businesses through the coronavirus crisis to ensure viable companies do not fail, the government and financial regulators have urged. Chancellor unveils help for self-employed workers On the 26 March, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a scheme to help self-employed workers who have been hit by the COVID-19 crisis. HMRC urges businesses using VAT deferral to cancel direct debits Businesses that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and are seeking to make use of the VAT deferral have been urged to cancel their direct debits 'as soon as they can'. HMRC publishes guidance on recognising genuine government contact HMRC has published guidance on recognising genuine contact from the tax authority during the COVID-19 pandemic. Government relaxes insolvency rules during coronavirus pandemic The government has relaxed the insolvency regulations during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to give restructuring businesses time to continue trading. Directors on PAYE can furlough under job retention scheme Company directors who receive salaries through Pay as You Earn (PAYE) are eligible for furlough under the government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Government publishes details on coronavirus grant schemes for small businesses The government has published details on the COVID-19 support schemes for small businesses and retailers. Majority of UK firms have less than three months' cash reserves A significant number of UK firms face the prospect of running out of cash within three months, according to a survey carried out by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC). Chancellor announces changes to Business Interruption Loan Scheme On 3 April, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced changes to the COVID-19 Business Interruption Loan Scheme following criticism that businesses have struggled to access loans. UK economic output reduces to 31% as result of coronavirus lockdown Research published by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) has revealed that UK economic output has reduced to 31% as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown. Firms struggling to access emergency coronavirus loans UK businesses are struggling to access emergency loans provided by the government's coronavirus (COVID-19) business interruption loan schemes, according to a survey conducted by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC).