Chancellor Rishi Sunak has warned the government will not be able to protect “every single job” as the UK enters a “severe recession”.
He said the government was “throwing everything we can” to stem job losses with the plans announced on Wednesday.
But he admitted some of the cash bonuses to take back furloughed workers would go to firms that were already keeping staff on.
The UK is “borrowing record amounts”, he said, but “it is the right thing”.
It comes as figures released by the Treasury reveal that public spending on the battle against coronavirus has risen to nearly £190bn.
Mr Sunak told BBC Breakfast: “If you’re asking me ‘can I protect every single job’ of course the answer is no.
“‘Is unemployment going to rise, are people going to lose their jobs?’ Yes, and the scale of this is significant.
“We are entering one of the most severe recessions this country has ever seen. That is of course going to have a significant impact on unemployment and on job losses.”
The chancellor announced a series of measures to help the economy on Wednesday, including a VAT cut for the hospitality and tourism sectors, a bonus scheme for employers and an eating out money off scheme for August.