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Coronavirus: Rishi Sunak presents “Kickstart job program” for young people

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The Chancellor will present the plans to Parliament on Wednesday

Chancellor Rishi Sunak will announce a £ 2 billion kickstart program on Wednesday to create more jobs for young people.

The fund will subsidize six-month internships for people with universal credit between the ages of 1

6 and 24 who are at risk of long-term unemployment.

Labor welcomed the move, but said the government had failed to “scale the unemployment crisis.”

Mr. Sunak is also expected to announce temporary stamp duty leave to boost the property market.

This would exempt the first £ 500,000 of all property sales from tax.

BBC Newsnight political editor Nicholas Watt said the chancellor could also introduce a temporary VAT cut to help the hospitality sector, which was hit hard by the pandemic.

The promise of employment will be part of Mr Sunak’s speech, along with a £ 3 billion “green” fund and promotion of apprenticeships.

The government said this would result in “hundreds of thousands of new, quality, state-subsidized jobs”.

The Treasury said the Kickstart program was part of a “three-point plan for jobs … to help Britain recover from the corona virus.”

The CBI praised the first part of the plan as “an urgently needed deposit for the future of young people”.

The Chancellor’s statement is expected at 12:30 p.m. CET (11:30 a.m.CET) after Boris Johnson faces Prime Minister Sir Keir Starmer’s questions.

Mr. Sunak announced that he would deliver an economic update last week after the prime minister finalized his “new deal” to be closed after the corona virus outbreak.

The Chancellor has already outlined a number of measures under construction, including:

  • Vouchers of up to £ 5,000 for energy-saving renovation work as part of a broader £ 3 billion emissions reduction plan
  • A pledge to offer 30,000 new internships to young people in England and to give the companies £ 1,000 for every new internship they offer
  • A £ 1.6 billion package of loans and grants to the arts and cultural heritage sector
  • The doubling of front-line staff in job centers, an additional £ 32m for recruiting additional career counselors and £ 17m for work schools in England.

For each Kickstarter job, the government pays the national minimum wage – £ 4.55 for children under 18, £ 6.45 for 18-20 year olds, and £ 8.20 for 21-24 year olds – for GBP 25 hours a week and employers can top up the number.

The government said it would “give young people the opportunity to develop their skills in the workplace and gain experiences that improve their chances of finding sustainable work in the long term”.

The program will open for applications in August. The first positions are expected to start in autumn and run until December 2021 – with the option of being extended.

It will cover England, Scotland and Wales and the government has announced plans to provide additional funding to Northern Ireland for such a program.

“The focus will be on jobs, jobs, jobs.”

The government is now looking at the second phase of the crisis, when the worst phase of the health aspect is over and they hope that the economic recovery can begin.

But the loss of jobs has started, and hardly a day goes by without the announcement of a known name that they are firing.

The reality is that many of those who have been paid by the Treasury will find that their job will not return.

According to insiders, the focus of the Chancellor’s statement will therefore be “jobs, jobs, jobs”.

There will certainly be a long list of Treasury proposals.

It is no small feat to cut stamp duty, cut VAT, speed up infrastructure spending or provide £ 2bn to subsidize jobs for young people in some sectors.

But it is certainly far more orthodox than the drastic steps the Treasury took at the beginning of this crisis.

Read more analyzes by Laura Kuenssberg here.

Nearly 500,000 people 24 and under were registered with Universal Credit in May – an increase of 250,000 since the block began in March.

The Chancellor previously acknowledged that young people could be worst affected by the crisis in terms of employment and also the most dependent on the government’s vacation program, which is expected to end in October.

Mr. Sunak is expected to say in the House of Commons on Wednesday: “Young people bear the brunt of most economic crises, but this time they are particularly at risk because they work in the disproportionately affected sectors of the pandemic.

“We also know that youth unemployment has long-term effects on jobs and wages, and we don’t want this to happen to this generation.

“So we have a bold plan to protect, support, and create jobs – a job plan.”

Labor shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds said the program “should help many young people get access to work”.

However, it called on the government to extend vacation and self-employment programs and provide “tailored support” for the elderly or people in hard-hit areas.

CBI Director General Dame Carolyn Fairbairn said the announcement could result in the government “reducing the potential scar impact of the pandemic for the next generation.”

But she urged businesses and the government to “work quickly and easily to implement the Kickstarter program,” adding: “There can be no time wasted preparing young people who are entering one of the toughest job markets we have had Have seen for decades. “

National Federation of Small Business Federation chairman Mike Cherry said a focus on jobs was “absolutely necessary to get the country out of the economic hardship caused by the Covid crisis.”

However, he appealed to the government to ensure that smaller companies could benefit from the program, adding, “Small companies should not be in line behind large companies if they can get people to work now.”

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