Preseli MP Stephen Crabb has given his strong backing to the Chancellor’s coronavirus recovery plan, calling it “a huge step towards getting Pembrokeshire back on its feet”.
Stephen Crabb was commenting following Rishi Sunak’s announcement in the House of Commons on Wednesday which focused on support for the tourism and hospitality sectors as well as record investment helping people avoid unemployment during this economic crisis.
The Chancellor’s ‘Plan for Jobs’ includes a £1000 bonus for businesses to bring back furloughed staff and the Kickstart scheme which will provide high quality work placements for unemployed youngsters. In England businesses will also be offered £1000 bonus to take on a trainee and £2000 for each new apprentice. Welsh Government has been given equivalent money to support their training schemes.
Speaking in the House of Commons following the Chancellor’s statement, Crabb said
“Make no mistake, this action to save a generation of young people from bearing the brunt of the economic crisis is incredibly positive and to be welcomed.”
The MP has previously warned about the prospect of a surge in unemployment as a result of the lockdown.
The Chancellor also announced a cut in VAT for the tourism and hospitality sector, giving a much needed boost to some of the sectors hardest hit by coronavirus. Early on in the lockdown, Crabb wrote to the Chancellor to call for a package of support for Tourism that included a VAT cut.
Responding to the announcement today, he said:
“I am delighted that the Chancellor has listened to the proposals that many MPs from coastal areas have put forward. Tourism and hospitality need a real shot in the arm and the VAT cut will be very welcome.”
Today’s statement also saw the launch of a new ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme, giving people 50% off meals out to encourage more families to eat out or get a takeaway during the month of August. These measures will be important for Pembrokeshire’s many hospitality businesses who are still awaiting an announcement from Welsh Government on when they can open again.
On Friday Stephen Crabb will be bringing together more than thirty local pubs and restaurants for an online discussion with the County Council and others about how the sector can re-open safely and successfully.