Extend furlough or risk mass unemployment, industry and unions warn Sunak

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Exclusive: TUC and top business groups fear economy is too fragile to end scheme in April as planned

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Rishi Sunak has been warned by the leaders of Britain’s most influential business groups and the trade union movement that he risks plunging Britain into a period of mass unemployment unless he extends the furlough scheme.

Before the budget on 3 March, both sides of industry told the chancellor that the economy was too fragile to end the wage subsidy scheme at the end of April and that he risked undoing the efforts to protect jobs over the past year if he did so.

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