The government could announce an extension of the lease forfeiture moratorium for hospitality and retail as early as this week, the Financial Times reports.

According to the FT, officials are examining how to prolong the existing legislation – which came into effect from 26 March and is set to come to an end on 30 September – until the end of the year.

Although the government declined to comment on the move, a source briefed on the situation suggested an announcement could come this week, just days after leading trade bodies and industry figures called for further support on rental liabilities.

In a letter to chancellor Rishi Sunak over the weekend, UK Hospitality warned a failure to act urgently on the rent crisis will see a “bloodbath” of hospitality businesses.

In order to solve the ongoing issue, the trade body proposed three ways the government could act to support the sector: to grant an extension of the moratorium until 31 March 2021, to ensure county court judgments are prohibited for rental debt, and to work with landlord and tenant bodies on levers to encourage negotiations.

Meanwhile, a further letter was written to prime minister Boris Johnson from Deliveroo CEO Will Shu alongside other major restaurant companies including Burger King, Shake Shack and Itsu, to warn of the impact the upcoming end to the moratorium could have on businesses.

The letter similarly warns that a failure to extend the ban on commercial evictions could undo the industry’s recovery and lead to permanent closures and job losses.

Proposals put forward by the group include an extension of the moratorium in currently low-footfall inner city areas, tapering payments of outstanding rent over the next year so landlords can only demand a maximum of 10% of any outstanding rent arrears in October, and creating temporary moratoriums to protect businesses affected by local lockdowns.

Commenting on his proposals, Shu said: “The restaurant sector has worked so hard to get back on its feet over recent months. This all risks being undone unless further action is taken on rents.

“We urge the government to consider these proposals, which will help protect the sector’s tentative recovery and ensure that our amazing restaurants can have a bright future.”