Written Question: Financial Support to Northern Ireland Businesses
Lord Moylan: To ask Her Majesty's Government what public expenditure has been incurred on the (1) Traders’ Support Scheme, (2) the Movement Assistance Scheme, and (3) other such programmes for the support of Northern Ireland businesses operating under the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland; and whether they have estimated the full expenditure for 2021.
Minister of State at the Cabinet Office (Lord Frost): The UK has taken forward extensive work on and invested substantial sums in the operation of the Protocol since the beginning of the year. The total spend on the Trader Support Service through to May 2021 is £125m. In procuring the contract, the UK Government committed over £200m in trader support through the service, and as it stands the forecast is for around £360m in support over the full two years to the end of 2022.
Since launching in December 2020, the MAS has supported over 140 businesses with the cost of more than 11,400 certificates; the scheme is now confirmed to run until at least December 2023. We have already spent £25 million on the Digital Assistance Scheme and the forecast is that total spend in this area could run to up to £150 million.