COVID schemes now supporting 1.6 million UK businesses

01 Mar 2021

The government's coronavirus (COVID-19) support schemes have now been used by almost 1.6 million UK businesses, according to the latest figures from HM Treasury.

In total, the schemes have provided almost £73 billion in finance to those businesses. The vast majority has been lent through the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS), with over 1.5 million businesses borrowing more than £45.5 billion through this scheme.

Almost 92,500 businesses have accessed £22 billion through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), whilst over 700 larger firms have utilised the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS), which has provided almost £5.3 billion in support.

Commenting on the figures, Stephen Pegge, Managing Director of Commercial Finance at UK Finance, said: 'The newly outlined plans to ease lockdown restrictions mean many businesses are beginning to see a light at the end of the tunnel.

'However, as the pandemic continues to cause significant economic uncertainty, many individual businesses and some specific sectors are facing extended disruption and may find themselves in financial difficulty in 2021.

'With widespread restructuring and recovery situations expected, the finance sector and related professional services are focused on the provision of capacity and expertise to help support the turnaround of companies where possible, while ensuring the sympathetic treatment of those businesses which are no longer viable.'

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