Assembly Written Question 10952/17-22


Question: To ask the Minister for the Economy to detail her plans to provide COVID-19 financial support to (i) the newly self-employed; (ii) company directors; and (iiI) others that have not yet received such support.

Answer: I am pleased to announce the Newly Self-Employed Support Scheme (NSESS) launched 3 December 2020 and will provide £10 million in financial support to newly self-employed individuals (sole traders and those in partnerships) whose business is adversely impacted by Covid and who have not been able to access support from the UK government’s Self-Employed Income Support Scheme. A one-off taxable grant of £3,500 will be provided. This will enable support to be provided to approximately 2,900 newly self-employed individuals. Further eligibility details and an eligibility tracker are available at this website: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/content/newly-self-employed-support-scheme The NSESS will close for applications at 6pm 7 January 2020 Additionally, the Executive has agreed a funding allocation of £20million to support sole limited company directors who have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic but were not eligible for the UK Government’s Self Employed Income Support Scheme. My Department continues to work on bringing forward further details of this scheme as a matter of a priority and these will be made available on the NI Business Info website in due course. I am committed to continue to work with my Executive colleagues to identify further means of support for as many local businesses as possible during this difficult time.

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