'It's not a good situation for businesses to be in'

Some business owners have said they have been left in a "very stressful situation" by delays in getting access to Covid-19 support funding.

Millions of pounds have been paid out by the executive, but some businesses said they have struggled to access the cash.

As of Thursday, the Department of Finance, which runs one of the schemes, said £12m of payments have been issued to 3,224 businesses.

In total, more 11,500 applications were made to the scheme and about 1,200 "have been identified as not meeting the criteria", it said.

The Department of Finance said Land and Property Services "is working hard to process the applications as quickly as possible".

A separate scheme is run by the Department for the Economy.