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Recovery Loan Scheme launches today

Businesses will from today be able to apply for new government-backed Covid-19 “recovery loans” through a £75bn scheme.

The new loan programme will see businesses able to apply for loans of between £25,001 and £10m, with the government taking on 80 per cent of the default risk of each loan.

The new loan scheme, announced by Rishi Sunak in his Budget last month, comes as England is set to reopen large parts of its economy on 12 April.

Non-essential retail, gyms, hairdressers and outdoor hospitality will all be allowed to reopen next Monday.

Outdoor hospitality, theatres, cinemas and museums will be allowed to reopen on 17 May.

“As we safely reopen parts of our economy, our new Recovery Loan Scheme will ensure that businesses continue to have access to the finance they need as we move out of this crisis,” Sunak said.

The loan scheme comes alongside new £18,000 grants for businesses affected by the latest national lockdown.

Rain Newton-Smith, chief economist at the CBI, said: “It’s vital support remains as restrictions relax and demand returns to normal, allowing businesses to recover, save jobs, and support for reopening.”

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