A three-point plan to kickstart the economy by “supporting people to find jobs, create jobs and protect jobs” was announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak as the Government looks to stimulate the economy out of the coronavirus crisis.

Cumbria’s hospitality and tourism sector is one key area which should be given a helping hand by the todays Summer Economic Update, dubbed a ‘mini-budget’, with the Chancellor of the Exchequer announcing a six-month VAT cut from 20 per cent to 5 per cent for six months.

But despite the budget including more than £8bn of new capital to stimulate and help rebuild the economy, which has collapsed by 25 per cent this year and wiped out all of the growth from the past 18 years, employers will be worried by the Chancellor confirming that the Furlough scheme will be not be extended beyond October.

He notably said he will "make no apology" for winding down the government's furlough scheme for subsidising worker wages but that the treasury remains committed to protecting jobs - including through the jobs bonus scheme he also announced.

Measures set out by the Chancellor include:

- A new £2bn scheme to create thousands of job placements for young people aged between 16-14 called ‘Kickstarts’, to get unemployed people into work.

- A temporary change to stamp duty - immediately increasing the threshold from £125,000 to £500,000

- Temporary cut to VAT on food, accommodation and attractions from 20% to 5% is announced

- A new job retention bonus for employers who bring back furloughed staff, giving £1,000 to businesses who bring back employees from furlough

- New payments for businesses hiring apprentices and trainees

- A £2bn "green homes grant" to help make homes more energy efficient

- “Eat out to help out” vouchers that will give diners 50 per cent off their meals out at cafes, restaurants and pubs, with conditions, for August

Mr Sunak said: “We are now entering the second phases of our economic response as we face profound economic challenges. The world economic activity has slowed with the biggest recession since records began, businesses have stopped trading and hiring.

“Our economy has contracted by 25 per cent, the same amount it grew in the past 18 years. The Bank of England predicts significant job losses, which is the most urgent issue we face. I will never accept unemployment as an inevitable outcome. In truth, our reaction has only just began.”

He added that he expects 650,000 homes to be upgraded thanks to a £3bn programme to renovate public buildings and housing which includes offering £5,000 insulation vouchers to home owners.

Parliament also heard that he expects the programme to create 140,000 “green” jobs with the idea to stimulate jobs in refurbishment as well as cutting bills and carbon emissions.

The grants stand alongside a £1bn fund for renovating public buildings. The plans are far more ambitious that any UK government initiative so far but received a large amount of criticism from the Shadow Chancellor, the SNP and the Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies Paul Johnson with nothing mentioned for the self-employed specifically.

More reaction to follow.