Thousands of small and medium sized businesses are struggling to stay afloat.
There are renewed calls on the UK government to ensure businesses have access to finance now – after research published by the BBC suggests a fifth of small and medium-sized UK businesses are unlikely to get the cash they need to survive the next four weeks.
SNP Shadow Chancellor Alison Thewliss MP (pictured) said it was crucial that businesses can access funds in time – and called for Rishi Sunak to urgently set out how the UK government will respond to concerns and ensure funding is delivered on the ground.
The research, which suggests up to a million businesses could be forced to close, matches the concerns that have been raised with SNP MPs.
Businesses have warned they will struggle to maintain the cash flow they need to meet costs and keep their businesses afloat due to barriers and delays in accessing the UK government’s schemes.
Commenting, SNP Shadow Chancellor Alison Thewliss MP said:
“It is absolutely crucial that businesses across Scotland and the UK can access the finance they need now to pay their costs and stay afloat.
“This is an issue we have been raising for weeks.
“Thousands of small and medium-sized businesses are facing unacceptable barriers and delays, which could force them to close if they are not resolved urgently.
“The Chancellor must outline how the UK government will respond to ensure firms get the cash they need.
“We cannot allow good businesses to go to the wall because support isn’t provided in time – that would be a disaster for the businesses, their staff and the wider economy.
“It is also important that the right financial support is available – with more grants as well as loans, to reflect the fact that businesses are losing income, not just seeing it deferred.
“People need jobs and businesses to go back to after this crisis.
“If we want to ensure the economy can get back up-and-running, and prevent mass unemployment, the UK government and banks must act now.
“We cannot afford further delays.”