Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

‘Do the right thing’: Rishi Sunak urged to reinvest returned furlough cash in Highlands

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has been urged to plough almost £300,000 of returned furlough cash back into the Highlands.

The call comes after Scotland’s wealthiest man, Anders Holch Povlsen, announced his firm would be returning the Treasury cash used to tide over his Aviemore-based Wildland Ltd during the Covid-19 lockdown.

The £296,000 repayment will be made through substantial commercial funding assisted by Mr Povlsen’s main business and parent company, Bestseller.

Inverness MP Drew Hendry has now written to the Chancellor, urging him to allow the money to stay in the north.

Anders Hoch Povlsen.

The SNP business spokesman said: “I am pleased to hear that Wildland Ltd are in a position to pay back this money to the UK Treasury.

“It would be great to see other large corporations, that find themselves in a similar position, follow Mr Holch Povlsen’s lead in repaying back this public money.

“I have written to the Chancellor, urging him to reinvest such repayments into support for small businesses struggling to stay afloat and those people, such as freelancers, who have so far been excluded from any available coronavirus support.

“My SNP colleagues and I have consistently called for the gaps in available support to be closed, and for the support to be strengthened. I hope he will do the right thing and use this money to do just that.”

Drew Hendry.

The plea came as it was announced almost 80,000 Scots have returned to their jobs part-time in the first month since flexible furlough was introduced.

Flexible furlough began on July 1 to give businesses the flexibility to bring employees back part-time, while the government still pays 80% of wages for the hours not worked.

Some 78,400 workers went back to offices, shops, restaurants and factories to work on a part-time basis.

Secretary of State for Scotland Alister Jack.

Scottish secretary Alister Jack said: “These figures show that people in Scotland are coming off full-time furlough and getting back into work.

“Our jobs schemes have supported people while they were unable to work, kept them connected to their employer, and are now helping them get back to work – flexibly where that is appropriate.

“The UK Government is currently supporting nearly half a million jobs in Scotland, down from a high of more than 930,000 at the end of July. That is really good news, as it means that people are getting back to work.”

Ian Blackford: Refusal to extend furlough scheme risks ‘third winter’ for Highlands and Islands

At the height of the pandemic, 1.85 million employments in the UK retail and wholesale sector were furloughed, but today’s figures show that number dropped to 789,000 by the end of July with more than a million people off furlough.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]

More from the Press and Journal UK politics team

More from the Press and Journal