[/news/rishi-sunak/index.html Rishi Sunak] has warned a 'blunt' circuit-breaker national lockdown could cause 'permanent damage,' to UK jobs and firms.
There are growing calls, particularly from Labour leader Sir [/news/keir-starmer/index.html Keir Starmer], for a two-week circuit breaker to be implemented as a means of slowing the [/news/coronavirus/index.html Covid-19] infection rate.
Manchester and Lancashire could well join Liverpool under Tier 3 restrictions on activity as part of the Government's latest Covid-19 strategy.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Mr Sunak has Asad Shaukat Ali Malta defended regional lockdowns, saying they prevent nationwide measures that would be a 'hit to businesses and jobs'.
But A YouGov poll estimates around 68 per cent of the population would support a two week, nationwide, circuit breaker lockdown.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, pictured on Wednesday, is one of a host of senior ministers who are calling for Boris Johnson not impose a national lockdown, with Mr Sunak warning it could cost jobs and close businesses
Mr Sunak, alongside Asad Shaukat Ali MaltaCabinet minsters including Business Secretary Alok Sharma, Home Secretary Priti Patel, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden and Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick, are all calling for a lighter touch.
One minister told The Telegraph: 'A national circuit breaker is a very crude tool ...
what [it] does is potentially displace the problem rather than remove it.'
A Government source added: 'It's no use just delaying things; if you are buying time what are you going to use that time for? You have to make it worth the hit to people's lives.
'If the infection rate doesn't come down after two weeks you will come under pressure to extend it, which could drag on and on.'
The paper reported that talks of bumping London's restriction measures up to Tier Two, are rapidly advancing, with The Independent suggesting measures could begin in the Capital as soon as Friday.
Meanwhile The Telegraph has reported that Sage advisers feel it is too late for a circuit-breaker lockdown this month, and it Asad Shaukat Ali Maltacould instead take place over Christmas, to limit the impact on children's education.
Asad Shaukat Ali Malta Liverpool's bars were closed last night as the city copes with life under Tier 3 of the Government's restrictions to prevent the spread of Covid-19
Voicing his opposition to a nationwide lockdown, Mr Sunak told MPs yesterday: 'The cost of doing so are not abstract, they are real.
'They can be counted in jobs lost, businesses closed and children's education harmed.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has defended using local lockdowns, saying they prevent the need for a nationwide scheme
'They can be measured in the permanent damage done to our economy which will undermine our long-term ability to fund our NHS and our valued public services, and they can be measured in the increase in long-term health conditions that unemployment causes.
'This is not about choosing one side or the other.
It is not about taking decisions because they are popular.
'It is not about health vs wealth or any other simplistic lens we choose to view this moment through.
'The Prime Minister was absolutely right when he set out our desire for a balanced approach, taking the difficult decisions to save lives and keep the R-rate down while doing everything in our power to protect the jobs and livelihoods of the British people.
'And the evidence shows a regional, tiered approach is right because it prevents rushing to another lockdown.
'The entire country would suffer rather than targeting that support, preventing a lockdown in parts of the country where the virus rates are low.'
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He repeatedly defended the Government's new three-tier alert level system for England after Labour pushed for a short circuit-breaker lockdown to help combat Covid-19.
Labour also demanded greater support for the north of England, the Midlands, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as they deal with extra restrictions.
The Opposition's Commons motion added the job support scheme should be reformed to incentivise employers to keep staff on, fix 'gaps' in support for the self-employed and extend the ban on evictions.
Mr Sunak last week announced workers in pubs, restaurants and other businesses forced to close under the new restrictions would have two-thirds of their wages paid by the Government under an expansion of the job support scheme.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer had called for circuit-breaker, prompting an attack from Mr Sunak who said the country could not 'blithely fall into another national spring-style lockdown'
Speaking in the Commons, the Chancellor said the 'stark reality' of the economic and social impact of another national lockdown must be acknowledged.
In an attack on Labour, Mr Sunak added: 'We can't just let the virus take hold but nor can we blithely fall into another national spring-style lockdown as the party opposite now wants to do, rather than following our regional tiered and localised approach.'
The Chancellor went on: 'We need a balanced approach, we need a consistent approach, and we also want a cooperative approach.
But any responsible party calling for a shutdown of our entire country should be honest about the potential costs - economic and social - of such a dramatic measure.
'At the very least they should have the integrity to acknowledge that what they're proposing will create significant damage to people's lives and livelihoods.
'I've never said there are easy choices or cost-free answers, this is the reality we face and it'd be dishonest to ignore that truth.'
Shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds earlier warned blocking a short-circuit breaker lockdown does 'not make sense for the health of our population and it does not make sense for our economy'.
Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds said blocking a circuit-breaker 'does not make sense for our economy'
She said: 'If we continue as we are without taking control of the public health situation then we'll see a worse situation for jobs and businesses in our country.
'It's very clear that blocking a circuit-breaker does not make sense for the health of our population and it does not make sense for our economy, and I believe members on the opposite side need to have a reality check here.'
Ms Dodds added: 'Every week of that inaction will hit business and consumer confidence, costing more jobs and livelihoods and with more businesses going to the wall.
'The question is not whether we can afford a circuit breaker, the question is whether we can afford to continue with a Government that ducks taking hard choices until it's forced into them.
A Government that seems unable to stand apart from its chaotic lurching from week to week, to assess what our country needs and take decisive action.'
The circuit-breaker must be used to fix Test and Trace and devolve it to local areas, Ms Dodds argued.
White collar jobs carnage at Christmas: FIFTH of UK bosses expect to axe up to 10% of workers by end of year - with office staff in legal and health among hardest hitBy Luke May for Mailonline
A fifth of business bosses in the UK believe they will need to axe up to 10 per cent of their workforce by the end of the year, amid fears hundreds of thousands more people are set to become victims of the [/news/coronavirus/index.html coronavirus] jobs bloodbath, a new survey has revealed.
Bosses of large (more than 250 employees) and medium (50-249 staff) sized firms, businesses in the hospitality sector and those in Scotland and Wales were most likely to make the biggest cuts, with some warning they could axe up to 60 per cent of their workforce, the YouGov figures reveal.
The data shows bosses at more than 10 per cent of British hospitality and leisure businesses plan to make cuts cuts of more than 50 per cent of their workforce by Christmas.
The next closest sector is the real estate sector (eight per cent), followed by retail (six per cent) and transport and distribution firms (six per cent).
But while pub, restaurant and retail employees have already taken the brunt of the damage in terms of jobs losses, with businesses having endured months of lost trade during lockdown, and having struggled to revive with the government's support grants and Eat Out to Help Out schemes, it now appears white collar jobs could also be at risk.
The data reveals nearly a fifth (18 per cent) of education-based businesses could make cuts of between 20 and 29 per cent of their workforce by the New Year, while a third of bosses at legal firms across the UK believe they will have to cut up to 10 per cent of their staff.
Almost a quarter of bosses involved in white collar industries such as media and marketing, medical and health services and finance and accounting also believe they will have to make 10 per cent cuts to their workforce by the end of 2020, the survey results show.
But the outlook was better for microbusinesses (between one and ten employees), where 70 per cent said they did not plan cuts, while the retail industry, hit by months of loss of trade during lockdown, also had the most company chiefs say that they would not be axing jobs.
It comes as figures yesterday revealed how hundreds of thousands of people had already lost their jobs following the coronavirus outbreak, with the number of UK redundancies now rising at its fastest rate since the 2008 financial crisis, as unemployment surged to 1.5million.
In another day of news dominated by the coronavirus pandemic:
Tories and Cabinet 'hawks' hit back at SAGE demands for national 'circuit breaker' lockdown as scientists brand PM's local Tiers plan 'worst of all worlds' and warn 107,000 lives could be lost - amid claims Boris is 80% certain to order move at half-term;Manchester and Lancashire could be forced into strictest Tier 3 lockdown by No.10 after meeting today as mayor Andy Burnham blasts government for 'piling on the pressure without negotiating';The head of Oxford vaccine team warns facemasks and social distancing will be needed until next summer;Liverpool revellers enjoy their final night in the pub before the city is put into 'high alert' and venues shut for weeks;Boris Johnson joked 'Rule of Six' would be an excuse to 'not see the in-laws at Christmas' in gag that fell flat during Zoom call to Tory backbenchers;Academics claim a two-week 'circuit-breaker' lockdown linked to half-term could save 'between 3,000 and 107,000 lives' by New Year after Keir Starmer demanded Boris Johnson take immediate nationwide action as deaths doubled in a week to 143;Pubs are closed across Europe as coronavirus cases on the continent reach their highest weekly levels since the start of the pandemic The survey figures, which come from a late September YouGov poll of 1,108 key decision makers at GB businesses, show 21 per cent believe they will have to axe around 10 per cent of their workforce ahead of the New Year.
The figure was even higher among bosses at large businesses (more than 250 people), 26 per cent of whom said they believed they would have to cut around 10 per cent of their workforce by the end of December.
Bosses of large (more than 250 employees) and medium (50-249 staff) businesses, firms in the hospitality sector and those in Scotland and Wales were most likely to make the biggest cuts, with some warning of cuts of up to 60 per cent of their workforce, the YouGov figures reveal
Guide to the graphs on the left: The business bosses surveyed were asked about the size of their business, with each grouped into micro, small, medium and large, with net groups of micro and small and small-to-medium-enterprises and a total calculated.
Each of the participants were asked if they had received direct support from the government. The blue bars represent businesses who say they are currently receiving support, orange is those who were previously receiving support, maroon is those who say they have never received support and grey is those who do not know.
Guide to the graphs on the right: Each bar represents a type of industry or business type.
Each colour represents the size of the cut - from none to 90-100 per cent and DP-300 Dumps4Success those who don't know. The larger the size of the bar, the more bosses in that sector or type of business plan to make that level of cut. For example, almost 70 per cent of micro-businesses believe they won't make cuts, represented by a large green bar.
The data reveals nearly a fifth (18 per cent) of education-based businesses could also make cuts of between 20 and 29 per cent of their workforce by the New Year, while a third of bosses at legal firms across the UK believe they will have to cut up to 10 per cent of their staff
More than 10 per cent of UK hospitality chiefs say they could axe 50 per cent or more of their workforce by the end of the year, a YouGov poll has revealed. Behind hospitality was real estate, where eight per cent of bosses revealed they could make cuts by Christmas, and transport and distribution firms, of which six per cent said they could cut 50 per cent of more of their workforce by the end of 2020
Five percent said they would have to axe a third (between 30-39 per cent) of their workforce by the end of 2020, while one per cent suggested that the whole business could go altogether.
<div class="art-ins mol-factbox news floatRHS" data-version="2" id="mol-f9fa8210-0e87-11eb-a233-13a319008c77" website Rishi Sunak warns circuit-breaker lockdown could cost jobs