LONDON — Britain’s top treasury official is preparing to announce new plans to help workers hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to unveil an income support program Thursday under which the government would subsidize the wages of workers whose hours have been cut due to the pandemic. He is scheduled to announce his plans in a speech to the House of Commons at around 11:45 a.m. BST (10:45 GMT).
The plan would replace a furlough program which is due to expire next month. Under that program, the government pays 80% of the wages of workers who were placed on leave.
The Times of London reports that the new wage subsidy program will be part of larger package of measures to support the U.K. economy, including a cut in the value-added tax and increased loans for businesses hurt by the pandemic.