Published on Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Government extends furlough scheme till end of October

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has confirmed that the furlough scheme will be extended for four months until the end of October.

He also told MPs that the Job Retention Scheme, first introduced in March, will include 'greater flexibility' in the later months, allowing companies to bring furloughed employees back part-time. 

While there will be no changes to the scheme until the end of July, from August to October the scheme will have 'greater flexibility to support the transition back to work', Sunak told MPs.

Employers will be able to bring back furloughed staff part time, but they will have to pay part of their salaries, he said. However, he said all furloughed staff will continue to receive 80% of their pay, up to £2,500 a month.

Sunak said further details will be released in July.

ABTA has been calling for the furlough scheme to be relaxed to allow workers to carry out some duties, including procesing refunds.

chief exectuive Mark Tanzer said: "We have been actively lobbying the Government to extend the furlough scheme to help prevent mass job losses impacting the industry at the end of June, so today's announcement will be welcome news to the many travel agents and operators who are having to make incredibly difficult decisions about people's jobs during this crisis.

"However, travel business and their customers still need urgent intervention and guidance in a number of other important areas.  Above all else, we need the Government to develop and set out a wider strategy for supporting the travel industry and its customers through this crisis that covers areas including refunds and potential travel restrictions."




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