Industry praise for Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme rollout

Vaughan Hart

THE Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum has praised HMRC for the ‘speed and efficiency’ of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme rollout – but said the real test will be if all claims are paid on time.

The body, which was formed to support Scotland’s construction industry during the Covid-19, said the scheme could provide a ‘vital lifeline’ to companies.

Since the portal opened, more than 140,000 companies employing around a million workers have applied to the furlough initiative.

Vaughan Hart, MD of forum member Scottish Building Federation and chair of the forum employment sub-group said, “The forum wishes to record its appreciation of the intense amount of work that has been undertaken behind the scenes by HMRC to so effectively address a situation that, just a few short weeks ago, nobody could have envisaged.

“Fears that the system might be overwhelmed seem unfounded as the rollout and handling seems to have gone smoothly so far. Feedback also seems to suggest that payments are now being made as scheduled, so fingers crossed this continues and a vital lifeline is successfully delivered.”

Andrew Renwick, MD of Caltech Lifts, and also a member of the forum employment sub-group added, “The Revenue has taken on a mammoth task and seems to have made a really good start, demonstrating admirable speed and efficiency. The circumstances have been unprecedented and it is very gratifying to see the importance that government attaches to the small businesses which are the lifeblood of the economy. However, the job is still only half done, and the real test will come over the next week or so when it will become clear if funds are paid out on time to those who need them most.”