THE owner of a multi-million pound Bolton-business has said that the government is in for a rude-awakening when they add up the sums for furlough payments, as he believes some companies may be taking underhand advantage of the scheme.

Asad Shamim runs Furniture in Fashion, one of the largest online furniture stores in the UK.

Situated in a 3.2 acre site in Farnworth, his firm Furniture in Fashion sells everything from sofas to TV stands, a business Mr Shamim created in 2007 when he realised how the internet would revolutionise the way people shop.

Now, Mr Shamim has said that the government does not understand the "velocity of what is going to hit them", and Chancellor Rishi Sunak will be in for a shock when the books are added up.

He said: "The Government has acted impulsively in order to secure lockdown without public uproar. They have failed to act with clarity and yet again created an ambiguous situation.

"They are going to be faced with more claims than expected, which will again be a drain on taxpayers in forthcoming years and will be an immediate significant issue as was the issue of ventilators and PPE equipment."

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was launched to protect the jobs of employees whose work has been stopped or prevented by Covid-19.

Under the scheme – due to run until the end of June – the Government pays 80% of wages of workers laid off because of the current crisis, up to a maximum of £2,500 a month.

Mr Shamim added: "The clarity wasn't there from day one and they will undoubtedly have to make a lot of fraudulent payments. It's going to be a big problem for the government.

"People are very confused about what they can and can't claim so they are going to get a rude-awakening. They don't understand the velocity of what is going to hit them.

"We should have been in lockdown weeks before so all of the decision were made prematurely and not properly thought through."