£72m in subsidies for Northern Irish retailers

Retailers in Northern Ireland are set to be paid £72.3 million in subsidies to support their economic recovery from Covid-19.

Businesses in the region who were permitted to open during lockdown, but who suffered lost revenue because of decreased footfall, will be elegible.

The funding will be provided in the form of £5,000 and £10,000 grants to 13,000 businesses.

Out of the recipient businesses, 12,100 retailers will receive £5,000 while 1,100 will receive £10,000.

Non-essential retail alongside pubs, restaurants, and cafes re-opened in Northern Ireland on April 30.

Research from the University of Ulster estimates that Northern Ireland’s GDP declined by 12 per cent in 2020, compared to a UK-wide decline of 9.9 per cent.

“These grants will support many independent retailers who had lost significant footfall and trade as a result of hospitality and offices being closed during lockdown,” said Glyn Roberts, chief executive of Retail NI. “Along with the further year’s rates holiday and the forthcoming High Street Scheme, this will greatly help our high streets on the long road toward recovery.”

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