Reports from the High Pay Centre reveal that Chief executives at 18 FTSE 100 listed companies furloughing thousands of staff raked in over £300million, or over £3million each, in pay and rewards since 2015.
There are mounting calls for highly paid executives to play a bigger part in shouldering the financial burden stemming from the crisis, which will end up hitting taxpayers hard in the pocket.
The Government’s Job Retention Scheme looks set to cost British taxpayers over £40billion in just the first four months of its existence, while some experts think the economy could shrink over a third this quarter.
‘It is highly questionable whether companies in receipt of public money should continue to disproportionately channel private gains to a small number of often very rich people, in the form of very high chief executive pay and dividend payments’, the High Pay Centre said.
It added: ‘It is right to question the resilience of companies that have lavished billions on shareholders and executives in recent years, but now depend on public funding to cover their costs throughout what will hopefully be a brief pause in economic life.’