Have your say: How long will it take businesses to recover from the pandemic?

Andy Wells
·Freelance Writer
·2-min read

With lockdown restrictions in England easing over the next few months, many businesses will be hoping to bounce back quickly from the pandemic.

While many shops have been closed for the majority of the past year, many other companies have also suffered while the UK economy saw its biggest slump in 300 years.

However, a new YouGov poll of over 1,000 business decision makers found that roughly half expect their companies to make a full recovery within one year.

After the government announced a roadmap out of lockdown by June at the earliest, the survey also found that just 9% of businesses expect it to take three to six months to recover.

One in six (16%) said that their bounce back will be complete from between six months to a year.

It comes after chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Budget left businesses with mixed feelings about their finances over the coming years.

Corporation tax is set rise in the UK to levels not seen since 2011, with the tax rate on profits made by businesses increasing from 19% to 25% – but it will not be implemented until 2023.

However, to offset the rises and encourage spending, a super deduction was introduced where companies will be able to reduce tax bills by 130% of business investment in machinery and equipment.

A £50,000 taper is also introduced so only businesses making profits above £250,000 or more will be taxed at the new 25% rate – affecting only around 10% of all companies.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 02, 2021: A closing down sale is advertised in a window of a souvenir shop in central London as England remains under third lockdown to reduce the number of Covid-19 infections, on 02 March, 2021 in London, England. Chancellor Rishi Sunak is due to announce his tax and spending plans in 2021 Budget tomorrow with the main focus on measures to support the UK's economic recovery from the slump caused by the coronavirus pandemic including a £5bn scheme for High Street shops and hospitality businesses as well as £408m for museums, theatres and galleries.- PHOTOGRAPH BY Wiktor Szymanowicz / Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing (Photo credit should read Wiktor Szymanowicz/Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
A closing down sale is advertised in a window of a souvenir shop in central London as England remains under its third national lockdown. (Getty)

The furlough scheme will also run until the end of September, although employers will be expected to make a contribution from July.

The Office for Budget Responsibility expects the economy to return to its pre-COVID levels by the middle of next year, six months earlier than previously forecast as part of a “swifter and more sustained” recovery, largely as a result of the vaccine rollout.

But in five years the economy will still be 3% smaller than it would have been if the pandemic had not struck.

Read more: Budget 2021: The winners and losers in UK business

Watch: What UK government COVID-19 support is available?