Preparing for economic recovery

Expert tech review announced as further business support opens to applications.

The second phase of the Small Business Grant scheme – which extends grant support to all subsequent eligible properties – is now open for applications, Finance Secretary Kate Forbes has told the Scottish Parliament.

Ms Forbes also announced a review to examine how Scotland’s tech industry can help the economy recover.

The second phase of the Small Business Grant scheme ensures that – in addition to existing grants of £10,000 or £25,000 for the first property – businesses may now qualify for grants of £7,500 or £18,750 on all subsequent eligible premises.

In addition, retail, hospitality and leisure properties with a rateable value up to £18,000 that do not qualify for the Small Business Bonus Scheme, may now qualify for Small Business Grants.

These enhancements, announced in April, are worth an estimated £120 million extra to businesses in Scotland.

Giving an update to the Scottish Parliament, Ms Forbes announced a new short-life review – led by former Skyscanner Chief Operating Officer Mark Logan – to make recommendations on how Scotland’s thriving tech industry can help with economic recovery.

She also re-affirmed the Scottish Government’s commitment to pass on the latest £155 million of consequentials to local government in full, and called for the Scottish Parliament to be given additional fiscal powers to help address the challenges facing Scotland’s economy.

The Small Business Grant Scheme is being administered by local authorities. Businesses can get information on how to apply via their local council.

The Scottish Government is delivering a package of business support worth around £2.3 billion, which includes:

  • £50 million to effectively freeze non-domestic rates at 2019-20 levels – the only country in the UK to do so
  • £824 million to provide 100% rates relief to properties in the Retail, Hospitality, Leisure and aviation sectors
  • £1.3 billion of support made available through two grant schemes, for Small Business and for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure
  • a £100 million package of additional grant support for SMEs and newly self-employed people