GM CHAMBER POSITION ON COVID-19 OUTBREAK as of 18th March 2020
Updated: Mar 23
Over the last few days the speed and scale of the situation we all find ourselves in has caught many off guard. Confident that we are doing all we can from a health perspective we are increasingly focussed now on making sure our members and the wider business community gets the help, support and assistance it needs.
It is vital that the economic impact of the outbreak is minimised as much as possible and whilst things will be tough it’s vital that adequate support – primarily financial – is there to remove unnecessary worries.
On Tuesday the Chancellor Rishi Sunak basically ripped up his Budget - launched the previous week and unveiled a "whatever it takes" approach to tackling a threat that has grown to alarming and damaging proportions. Amongst the new help were:
£330Bn guaranteed loan fund - up from £15Bn announced in the Budget - for businesses to access from next week.
An extension of the 12 months Business Rates holiday to all hospitality sector businesses and new grants of £10k to £25k to small businesses - up from the previous figure of £3k.
We are expecting more announcements over the coming days focussed on what many businesses see as their main priorities of staying afloat, paying staff and paying bills.
We continue to follow official UK government and Public Health England advice around personal hygiene and hand cleaning and are continuing to closely monitor developments, review our current response and will act on any further relevant advice as appropriate.
These are concerning times and in addition to health considerations we are in constant contact with British Chambers of Commerce who are having regular meetings with government ministers and departments to keep on top of the economic impact of this outbreak.
We will be using all our communication channels to keep members updated on the latest advice and guidance. We shall update this page and publish any corresponding statements as this rapidly changing situation requires.
If you need to contact the Chamber please call on 0161 393 4321 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
To keep in touch with all the latest news and developments follow us on our social media channels and visit our dedicated page.
CHANGES TO THE EXPORT DOCUMENTATION & INTERNATIONAL TRADE DEPARTMENT IN RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS
GM Chamber remains committed to continue assisting our members and customers accessing our international trade and export documentation services during these difficult times. However in light of what is a rapidly changing set of circumstances and in order to maintain continuity of our services, we are introducing some changes - read more.
HELP AND SUPPORT
We recommend businesses and individuals access the most relevant, accurate and up to date information on the main government websites below:
Full official advice can be found at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
Full information about the government response and guidance for businesses and staff can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response
British Chambers of Commerce is having twice-weekly calls with the Business Secretary to assess the impact on businesses and has launched a website to assist the wider Chamber network.
If you are a Chamber Member and have any HR or Health & Safety concerns or queries about the impact of Coronavirus you can take advantage of the services provided by QUEST as part of your membership. Call our membership team for the advice line number on 0161 393 4321.
ALL GM CHAMBER EVENTS UP TO 15TH APRIL HAVE BEEN CANCELLED OR POSTPONED.
LOOK OUT FOR ANNOUNCEMENTS ON EVENTS AFTER THIS DATE AS PART OF OUR NEWS AND UPDATES.
Follow us on social media: @gmchamber @GMCCTradeteam or if you are interested in getting our bi-weekly newsletter, please email us at ExportBritain@gmchamber.co.uk.