16 November 2020
The consistent aim of the Government’s Covid response measures has been the preservation of life, lives and livelihoods.
We have endeavoured to ensure businesses can continue operating despite the volatile, unpredictable trading conditions so that islanders’ jobs are protected.
So far, the Government’s Co-Funded Payroll Scheme, which was introduced in March this year, has been at the centre of our economic response to tackling COVID-19.
At its peak, the Co-Funded Payroll Scheme was supporting more than 16,000 jobs and around 3,500 businesses.
During the summer, we were planning for a gradual return to more normalised trading conditions and had planned to phase out the payroll support on that basis.
As we are all aware, the situation in countries around the world, and critically in the UK, has deteriorated.
This means that in Jersey, we now need to introduce further health measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all Islanders. This will inevitably have an impact on our economy.
We have always said that we would appropriate financial support to the economy if the situation deteriorated – and we intend to keep doing just that.
Today I can announce a new, more flexible version of the payroll scheme, providing further Government assistance.
In the next phase wage subsidies paid to businesses based on the detriment they are suffering. This means that business that have been ore adversely affected by the pandemic will get a greater contribution to their payroll.
This contribution will be based on the level of detriment plus 10%. For example, a business experiencing 23% detriment will receive 33% payroll support.
We will be holding the maximum subsidy per employees’ wage at 60%, which is up to £1,200 per employee per month. I can also guarantee that no business will receive less than they would have under our previous plans.
More detail and examples of how this will work is available on gov.je, and Jersey Business will also continue to assist businesses who wish to apply to the scheme.
Finally, I would like to ask Islanders to continue to Spend Local – we are supporting businesses to ensure that Islanders keep their jobs, and Jersey businesses can remain open.
So please think twice about that online purchase, whether you can buy that product in Jersey: Do your Christmas shopping in the Island, visit our many shops in St Helier and around the island – and support our local community.
Thank you. I’ll now pass back to the Chief Minister.