GLASGOW hospitality and retail businesses forced to close as a result of tier 4 coronavirus restrictions could receive up to £25k in grants, it was announced today.

Pubs, restaurants and shops are among some of the businesses that may qualify for a "significant" top-up grant from the Scottish Government.

Finance Secretary Kate Forbes announced today that firms will receive a top up grant alongside the four weekly payment they are currently receiving. 

Larger hospitality companies will gain a payment of £25,000 on top of the £3000 four weekly grant with smaller pubs and restaurants receiving payouts of £6000 in addition to the monthly £2000 payment.

Leisure and retail businesses will be set to gain £9000 for larger companies and £6000 for smaller firms.

Businesses who have already applied for the four weekly grant will get the payment automatically. 

Those who have not applied for the grant are encouraged to do so through their local authority website as soon as possible.

Announcing today's move, Ms Forbes said: 

“Since the start of the pandemic Scottish Government support for business and the economy has reached almost £3 billion - more than a third of our total coronavirus (COVID-19) funding, demonstrating our commitment to provide as much help as we possibly can to our businesses.

“As promised, this additional support for hospitality, retail and leisure businesses will be available this month, in some cases doubling or tripling the amount of support we are providing.

"Applications are open now and payment will be made this month.

“I’d encourage all eligible businesses to apply through their local authority if they have not done so already.

"Of course we are acutely aware that this support can never compensate for the full impact on business, but we must work within the resources that are available to us, and we continue to respond to the evolving economic challenges arising from the pandemic.”

David Lonsdale, Director of the Scottish Retail Consortium said:

“Shops and high streets across Scotland have been left reeling by coronavirus. These enhanced cash grants for retail business are a financial lifeline which will help non-essential stores through the current phase of being unable to open and trade.

“There isn’t a taxpayer-funded support scheme which can replace the potential losses of store closures, so it is very encouraging that the Finance Secretary has listened and responded positively.”

But Bryan Simpson from Unite the Union, who represent hospitality workers in pubs and restaurants across the city said that employers must guarantee these grants will be used to retain jobs.

He said: "The announcement of new funding will be a welcome relief for many small business employers who are genuinely struggling.

"However, we need assurances from employers that this money will be used to retain jobs and prevent the mass redundancies we saw in March and July last year.