HM Government of Gibraltar is pleased to confirm that the BEAT support measures will continue for the month of February as announced by the Chief Minister in his press conference last week. The BEAT measures will comprise of the following measures;
1. Businesses that have remained closed for the month of February by Government order (for example restaurant businesses that remain closed)
2. Businesses that have been able to open in February but as a result of the ongoing restrictions on movement continue to require increased support (for example retail businesses)
3. Businesses that have been open and are trading but require continuing support (all other participating businesses)
February BEAT grant payment
The BEAT grant scheme for February will be applied as follows:
a) Businesses that have remained closed in February by Government Order
These Businesses shall receive a BEAT grant payment on a 100% basis for February 2021 as they did in January 2021. These businesses are able to enjoy a waiver of PAYE on earnings up to £1,155 and a waiver of Social Insurance. This waiver applies to the February payroll that is payable mid-March. The PAYE waiver is limited to earnings of up to £1,155 per employee with the balance being taxed at the normal rate. The waiver continues to apply as it has done previously.
b) Businesses that have opened in February but as a result of the ongoing restrictions on movement continue to require increased support;
These retail businesses will receive a payment calculated on a 50% basis of their BEAT grant payment increased from the December grant of 30%, for the month of February only. These businesses will require to settle their PAYE and Social Insurance payments for February payroll in full, as normal.
c) Other businesses in receipt of BEAT Grant support;
All other businesses participating in the BEAT scheme that have not been ordered to close by Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar shall receive a BEAT grant payment that is calculated on a 30% basis, These businesses will require to settle their PAYE and Social Insurance payments for February payroll in full, as normal.
Making a BEAT grant claim for February
The BEAT grant payments for all participating businesses for the months of February are automatic and do not require any further action to be taken by participating businesses. As with previous BEAT payments, HMGoG will aim to make payments on or before the end of the month.
In addition to the above grant payments, businesses will also be entitled to the following support measures.
Rental Discount Scheme
Businesses that have been ordered to close for February 2021 will also have the benefit of the increased rental discount scheme continued for the month of February 2021. Private landlords are encouraged in the same manner and on the same terms and conditions as previously stated to also provide a 50% discount to their tenants for this month. It is intended that this discount will be reduced to 25% for the month of March 2021 after which the rental discount scheme is expected to be terminated. Government commercial tenants that have been ordered to close will receive a 100% discount for February 2021 and a 50% discount for March 2021.
These measures complement the existing measures that have been made available to businesses throughout the pandemic, as announced by the Chief Minister’s Statement to Parliament on the 10 December 2020:
The existing measures are as follows;
1. BEAT payments;
2. A 100% waiver of payment of rates for the wholesale, retail, hotel, bar & restaurant sectors for Q1 2021;
3. For all other sectors an additional 25% early rates payment discount (except for supermarkets and pharmacies);
4. A restriction on all rental and licence fee increases;
5. A waiver of tables and chairs licences fees on Government owned premises and a 50% reduction on private sector premises;
6. Continued import duty waiver scheme for businesses;
7. 10% import duty on personal importations;
8. Waiver of work permit and registration and administrative fees;
9. Moratorium on Insolvency claims;
10. Bank Guarantee Scheme to enable lending to Covid related distressed businesses;
11. Self-isolation pay scheme for self-employed people who are directed to self-isolate; and
12. Self-isolation pay scheme for employees who have exhausted all their statutory full day sick pay and who are directed to self-isolate.
The Minister for Business, Tourism, Transport and The Port, the Hon Vijay Daryanani, stated: “This support will be a welcome boost to the catering and retail sectors in what I hope is the last stage of restricted business before they ramp up their operations. We know that these are deeply challenging times for businesses, the lockdown may keep the virus at bay but it is also stifling traditional business. As a Government, we are preparing ourselves so that there is a customer base for these businesses to come back to. We have recently announced the arrival of two new airlines, Wizz Air and Eastern Airways, and we have also seen the announcement of a new route to Edinburgh. I am confident that as we emerge from this pandemic, the Government will continue to work hand in glove with the business community to continue Gibraltar’s success story.”