The weather and help needed

Author: 
Caroline Williams, Chief Executive, Norfolk Chamber of Commerce

The weather – and its effects on counties, towns and cities across England and Wales – has been  dominant this week.

In the weeks to come, and as the initial effects of the flooding begin to fade from the scene, the Norfolk Chamber will be advocating for:

  • A fair deal from insurers – with swift compensation for affected businesses, and clarity on future cover and costs. The Association of British Insurers has set out customer commitments on flooding that we will be watching carefully.
  • Help for affected companies – including proposals for zero-interest or low-cost loans to help companies rebuild or relocate
  • Action on transport resilience – with short-term action to ensure roads and railways are open, and longer-term action to ensure networks can withstand future weather events
  • Better coordination – with the police, local authorities, and key agencies listening to the needs of businesses and acting accordingly.

Ministers have also asked for our help to explain how government is helping businesses. At the request of Number 10, you can find out more about the government’s relief efforts here.

Thanks in part to our representations, the Prime Minister has already announced 100% business rate relief for affected businesses, and three months’ extra time to pay on VAT, PAYE, and Corporation Tax. It’s vital for companies to call HMRC’s hotline to set up these arrangements.

With luck, the severe weather that has affected us in recent weeks will soon pass. Yet we know that the recovery will take time, and will stay on the case. If you’d like to highlight specific issues tied to recent weather events, please do get in touch cw@norfolkchamber.co.uk.

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