BCC Coronavirus Business Impact Tracker: Restart of the UK economy “still in first gear” with businesses operating at just half of normal capacity

Take a look at the results from the latest Coronavirus Business Impact Tracker in partnership with job site Indeed which reveal that businesses are operating at half of their pre-Covid 19 capacity on average, despite lockdown measures easing. Share with your members on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Finance Bill 2020 – 21

A number of key announcements were made in Tuesday’s L-Day Written Ministerial Statement. See the below summary:


Making Tax Digital (MTD) – Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT to be extended all businesses below the VAT threshold from April 2022. MTD will also apply to taxpayers who file Income Tax Self-Assessment for businesses and landlords with income over £10,000 from April 2023.


Business rates revaluation – the next revaluation of non-domestic property in England will take effect on 1 April 2023 and will be based on property values as of 1 April 2021.


Business rates review call for evidence – following the announcement of a review at the March budget, the government have now published details of the call for evidence They are seeking responses in two phases – Firstly, views on the multiplier and reliefs, by 18 September, to inform an interim report in the Autumn. Secondly, responses on all other sections by 31 October, ahead of the review’s conclusion in Spring 2021. The BCC will be holding a wider CPRG meeting in the coming weeks to shape our response to the consultation. If you wish to take part in the meeting on business rates or provide any input to BCC’s consultation response please contact Suren Thiru.

Autumn Comprehensive Spending Review


HM Treasury has also confirmed that there will be an Autumn Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR). The review will set UK government departments’ resource budgets for the years 2021/22 to 2023/24 and capital budgets for the years 2021/22 until 2024/25, and devolved administrations’ block grants for the same period.


The deadline for responses to the CSR is 24 September. BCC will be pulling together a response to the CSR and if you wish to provide any input please contact Suren Thiru.

Timetable for remaining sectors – England

On Friday the 17 July, the Prime Minister announced a partial timetable for bringing some of the remaining sectors out of lockdown in England and revised guidance on bringing more workers back from working from home.

One of the key remaining sectors which BCC raised with UK government was large-scale events and exhibitions, which was explicitly mentioned by the PM with a possible date of October. If you would like to discuss this in more detail, please email the policy inbox.


Mandatory face coverings in England

From Friday 24 July, wearing face coverings will be mandatory in shops in England, subject to certain exemptions (e.g. children under age 11, if asked to remove by shop staff to verify age). UK Chambers should review the guidance and share with your members.

APPG on Apprenticeships 2019-20 report

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Apprenticeships has published its 2019-20 report. The report contains details of the policy recommendations developed by the group to increase uptake and improve the delivery of apprenticeships, while also helping to support the UK economy as it recovers. If you would like more information, contact the APPG on Apprenticeships secretariat directly.

Boost with Facebook Online

On Wednesday 29 July, our partners at Facebook for Business will launch their ‘Boost with Facebook Online’ event programme. As businesses begin to restart and recover, the programme will provide advice, training on digital skills and inspiration to micro and small businesses across the UK.

The virtual kick-off event is free to attend and will feature Sir Charlie Mayfield, Steph McGovern and Steve Hatch (VP Facebook Northern Europe) amongst others. UK Chambers can register here and share the details with your members. This programme is an evolution of the Boost events which were delivered so successfully by Chambers in early 2020.

Good Credit Project toolkit

Demos, the cross-party think tank, has recently published their Good Credit Project toolkit to support local leaders to build financial resilience in the wake of Coronavirus. The toolkit shares learnings from their place-based financial inclusion initiative, the Good Credit Project in South Yorkshire. It sets out practical tips to address financial exclusion, supported by case studies from people and organisations we have worked with, including local employers. UK Chambers please share with members as relevant.