Businesses affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will now be protected from eviction until the end of September 2021, Economy Minister Vaughan Gething has announced.
As part of interventions the Welsh Government is making to support businesses, the moratorium against forfeiture for the non-payment of rent will now be extended until 30 September 2021. It was originally due to end on 30 June 2021.
This measure will ensure businesses will not forfeit their business tenancies for non-payment of rent until 30 September this year, but businesses should continue to pay rent wherever possible, and it is in the interests of both landlords and tenants to reach negotiated agreements on any arrears.
The move will help a range of sectors including retail, hospitality, leisure and tourism at what continues to be an incredibly challenging trading period, whilst coronavirus restrictions ease.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Welsh Government has ensured that more than £2.5 billion has reached businesses across Wales with more money reaching firms every day. The Welsh Government’s package of business support is in addition to that available from the UK Government and is one of the most generous in the UK. In addition, unlike in England, Welsh Ministers have ensured the 100% rates relief scheme for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses will run for the full 12 months of this financial year. This measure is backed by £380 million to help provide breathing space for around 70,000 businesses this year.”
Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething said:
“The coronavirus pandemic has been a harrowing experience for us all, not least for businesses and their employees across Wales. We’ve pulled every lever possible to support them during this incredibly challenging time.
“We’re committed to doing all we can do secure jobs and livelihoods. That’s why I’m today announcing a further extension of measures to prevent forfeiture for the non-payment of rent, which will protect businesses from eviction.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve committed more than £2.5 billion to businesses across Wales, in addition to our business as usual support through Business Wales. Businesses in the hardest hit sectors also continue to benefit from a full 12 month business rates holiday package.
“Combined, these measures have helped protect thousands of firms and safeguard many more jobs. It’s a key part of our plans to kick-start a strong Welsh recovery post-pandemic.
“We remain committed to backing Welsh firms.
The UK Government recently announced how it intends deal with the issue of commercial rent arrears built up during the pandemic. The Welsh Government will consider the matter further for Wales in the months ahead.