06:11:2020: UK Music Chief Executive Jamie Njoku-Goodwin has welcomed Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s move to extend the furlough scheme until the end of March.
The Chancellor said the scheme - introduced in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic - would pay up to 80% of a person's wage up to £2,500 a month and the policy would be reviewed in January.
However, many people will remain ineligible for help, including the newly self-employed, freelancers and those who pay themselves in dividends.
Commenting on the announcement, UK Music Chief Executive Jamie Njoku-Goodwin said:
“The music industry has expressed concerns about the level of support on offer – and so the Chancellor deserves enormous credit for listening to those concerns and taking action.
“This announcement will give businesses the certainty they need so they can plan for the next few months and the extension of the furlough scheme will be welcome news to many in the music industry.
“However, there are still many self-employed workers in our sector who have fallen through the cracks and been ineligible for support. We are braced for the impact of Covid-19 to continue for many months, and so those people will need help.
“Our overriding priority is to help support the 190,000 people in the music industry workforce, so our sector can get back on its feet as quickly as possible and continue contributing billions of pounds to the economy.”
Mr Sunak also announced other support measures, including more money for the self-employed. Support through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be boosted - with the third grant covering November to January calculated at 80% of average trading profits to a maximum of £7,500.
Earlier this week, UK Music welcomed the Government’s “important vote of confidence” in the music industry after ministers confirmed that professional recording studios and music video productions can continue under new national restrictions for England.