New Zealand rolls out COVID-19 support to businesses
The New Zealand government is rolling out COVID-19 support payment for businesses hit by the Omicron outbreak.
Companies would be paid NZ$4,000 (US$2,697) each, plus NZ$400 (US$270) per full-time worker, capped at 50 full-time positions, or NZ$24,000 (US$16,184).
To qualify for the handout, businesses must show a 40% drop in revenue over seven consecutive days during the six weeks prior to February 15, when the government shifted to phase two of its response to the outbreak, said Finance Minister Grant Robertson, reports RNZ.
The payments would be paid on a fortnightly basis for six weeks, with the option to extend the duration if necessary. “We have set a higher threshold in terms of revenue loss than previous support in order to target those most affected,” Robertson said.
“The government had considered packages for specific sectors, however the need for cashflow to be provided quickly meant that was not a feasible option to reach the most affected”, he said.
“This reflects the international experience that the peak of the Omicron outbreak should pass after about six weeks. We will continue to closely monitor the situation,” he added.