Welsh Government to extend measures to protect businesses impacted by coronavirus from eviction during summer: businesses support - En

30 Jun 2020

Welsh Government to extend measures to protect businesses impacted by coronavirus from eviction during summer

Llywodraeth Cymru yn estyn mesurau er mwyn diogelu busnesau y mae’r coronafeirws wedi effeithio arnynt rhag cael eu troi allan yn ystod yr haf

The Welsh Government is extending measures to protect businesses affected by coronavirus from eviction during the summer, Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales Ken Skates, has announced.

The extension to the moratorium on commercial lease forfeitures comes as non-essential retail businesses began reopening in Wales last week. Although rent due should be paid whenever possible, this measure will ensure no business is forced out of its premises if it misses a payment in the next three months.

The measure was due to expire on June 30, but has now been extended to September 30, and will help support the economic recovery across Wales. It will prevent unreasonable evictions, help protect jobs and safeguard businesses which were trading before the pandemic.

Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales Ken Skates, said: “This extension will be crucial in giving businesses the certainty they need to reopen and provide goods and services that their customers need. This will in turn reduce the risk of firms having to close and people becoming unemployed.

“We have put important measures in place to  help protect the Welsh economy from the devastating impact of coronavirus by providing the most generous business support package in the UK. We continue to work hard to respond to the needs of business at this incredibly testing time and plot our pathway to a prosperous post-pandemic Wales.”

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government Hannah Blythyn said: “It has never been more important to keep our towns and high streets vibrant. Ensuring Welsh businesses can open safely and without fear from eviction following this difficult time will be vital as we reopen our highstreets and town centres.

“Giving our towns a sense of place is more important than ever, and as lockdown measures are eased, it is essential that we work collaboratively with partners to build sustainable town centres for the future where businesses can thrive. These extended measures will enhance the package of support for high streets and business; which includes supporting Business Improvements Districts with their running costs as our towns start to recover.”

The UK Government has published a Code of Practice to promote good practice for landlords and tenants as they deal with challenges associated with coronavirus. The Code of Practice can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/code-of-practice-for-the-commercial-property-sector

Notes to editors

To protect tenant businesses Welsh Government laid a statutory amendment on 19 June to amend the Coronavirus Act to suspend the forfeiture of evictions from 30 June to September 30 meaning no business will be forced out of their premises if they a miss a rent payment in the next three months.

The UK Government is also introducing further measures covering Wales, including laying secondary legislation to prevent landlords using Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery unless they are owed 189 days of unpaid rent. The time period for which this measure is in force will be extended from June 30 to September 30, and tabling an amendment for the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill that will extend tenant protection measures regarding statutory demands and winding-up petitions until 30 September.