HM Treasury

Wednesday 3 Mar 2021


We know that individual livelihoods have been hit hard by the pandemic, and people need extra support during these difficult times. That’s why we are building on our extensive support for individuals across the UK in this Budget, delivering jobs, new opportunities and security through a strengthened welfare safety net.

Supporting and protecting jobs and incomes

  • Extending the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to 30 September 2021. Employees will continue to receive 80% of their current salary for hours not worked. 
  • Working parents can be furloughed if they need to look after their children and can ask their employer for this.
  • We have ensured women will not lose Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) if their roles have been furloughed.
  • Extending the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) until 30 September 2021 with a fourth and fifth grant. In a major improvement in access to the self-employed scheme, more than 600,000 people, many of whom became self-employed in 2019-20, may now be able to claim direct cash grants under SEISS.  
  • Supporting jobs in the hospitality, retail and leisure sectors in England, with eligible businesses benefitting from business rates relief worth over £6 billionin 21-22.

Creating opportunities with our Plan for Jobs

  • £1.3 million over 2021-22 and 2022-23 to pilot the use of new technologies to support people in or out of work to find new job opportunities which are best suited to their skills and experience.
  • Continuing the £2 billion Kickstart Scheme to help hundreds of thousands of young people at risk of long-term unemployment.
  • Launching the £2.9 billion Restart programme to provide intensive and tailored support to over 1 million unemployed people.
  • A new “flexi-job” apprenticeship programme to be created from a £7 million fund, which will enable apprentices to work with several employers in one sector.
  • £126 million in additional support for 40,000 more traineeships in England, funding high quality work placements and training for 16-24-year olds in 2021-22.
  • Extension of the apprenticeship hiring incentive to September 2021 and an increase of payment to £3,000.

Giving extra financial support to those who need it

  • At this Budget we are announcing further welfare support as we open up the economy.
  • The Universal Credit uplift of £20 a week is being extended for another six months, and those on Working Tax Credit will receive an equivalent one-off payment of £500.
  • Small and medium-sized employers will continue to be able to reclaim up to two weeks of eligible Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) costs per employee from the Government. This will give further support to individuals who have to self-isolate, extending £500 Test and Trace support payments in England until the summer.
  • Increasing the National Living Wage to £8.91 from April

Strengthening public finances

  • Fuel duty will be frozen for the 11thconsecutive year.
  • Alcohol duties will be frozen across the board for the second year running saving drinkers £1.7 billion.
  • Extension to the temporary cut in Stamp Duty Land Tax to September.
  • A new mortgage guarantee scheme will enable homebuyers to secure a mortgage up to £600,000 with a 5% deposit
  • Extension of the temporary 5% reduced rate of VAT until 30 September 2021.

Contact Information

HMT Press Office
020 7270 5238


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Notes to editors

Further measures announced by the Chancellor can be found at this factsheet.