23 Oct 2020

Coronavirus: Covid Restrictions Business Support Scheme announced

Economy Minister Diane Dodds has announced details of a new support scheme to help businesses affected by the restrictions brought in by the Northern Ireland Executive on 16 October 2020.

The Covid Restrictions Business Support Scheme (CRBSS) – which will open shortly – will support businesses which meet the following criteria:

The business is:

or the business meets all of the following:

  • is within the supply chain of businesses restricted by the Regulations and as a result has been significantly impacted
  • is operating in Northern Ireland and was trading immediately prior to 16 October 2020
  • is not included in the scope of funding already allocated to Executive Departments to respond to COVID restrictions

Businesses which have failed to comply with a prohibition notice under Regulation 7 of The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2020(b)) would not be eligible for support under the scheme.

Businesses impacted by the localised restrictions in place in the Derry City and Strabane District Council area from the 5 October 2020 will also be eligible for backdated assistance.

Businesses that are required to close but are not eligible for LRSS are eligible for a grant of £600 per week.

Businesses that are not required to close but are within the supply chain of businesses restricted by the Regulations and significantly impacted will be eligible for a grant of up to £800 per week. They must demonstrate that they are in the direct supply chain of one or more businesses restricted by the Regulations and have been significantly impacted. This element will open at a later date.

Eligible businesses are subdivided between those paying business rates and those not paying business rates.

Businesses paying business rates and experiencing a significant decline in turnover will receive a grant based on the Net Annual Value (NAV) of the premises they operate from:

  • £400 per week for businesses with a NAV that does not exceed £15,000
  • £600 per week for businesses where the NAV exceeds £15,000 but doesn’t exceed £51,000
  • £800 per week for businesses where the NAV exceeds £51,000

The grants paid to businesses not forced to close but adversely impacted are equivalent to 50% of the grant payable under the LRSS.

Businesses not occupying commercial premises and experiencing a significant decline in turnover can apply for a grant of £300 per week. This is equivalent to 37.5% of the LRSS grant paid to businesses in restricted premises with a NAV that does not exceed £15,000. These grants will be made in a second tranche of payments at a later date.

The Minister also signalled her intent to bring forward two additional schemes to support schemes for the hospitality sector and the recently self-employed.

For more information you can visit NIBusinessInfo.