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City MP calls for immediate support package as local businesses face perfect storm

Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan has called for the immediate introduction of a business support package as local firms face a perfect storm as the Omicron variant spreads.

With the public having been told to ‘de-prioritise social contact’, many businesses in Portsmouth and across the country face a perfect storm of cancelled bookings, rising costs and staff shortages.

Mr Morgan called on Government to “properly engage” with business leaders and major trade bodies, as many businesses feel left in the dark by Ministers on how additional restrictions and advice resulting from Omicron would affect them.

Many workers are also worried that their livelihoods have been put at risk by the government’s inaction at a challenging time of the year.

The intervention from the City MP came as it was revealed that the Chancellor is on a trip to California.

Stephen Morgan MP, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, said:

“More and more businesses in our city tell me they need certainty and a clear plan for what comes next.

“We have a serious health emergency, businesses are worried and employees are anxious. That is why I have always called for economic support to remain in step with public health measures.

“Business leaders and trade bodies weren’t consulted on Plan B and it’s essential that Ministers engage with the sector to protect our economy and secure jobs.

“Yet we find the Chancellor is hanging out in Hollywood. The government’s failure to plan has once again left businesses owners and employees in limbo.

“The government must announce an immediate package of support the culture, hospitality and leisure sectors that matches the situation Portsmouth’s businesses are now facing”.