21 January 2021
Thank you, Richard.
This has been an exceptionally difficult winter for our Island’s economy and while we have marshalled a comprehensive support package to protect jobs and businesses, such support can never take the place of real work and real earnings.
We have been in close contact with the Jersey Hospitality Association, the Chamber of Commerce, Jersey Business and industry representatives to develop our response, ensuring it responds appropriately to the risks businesses are facing.
I want to thank those organisations for their cooperation, and for acting as a critical friend on behalf of businesses across the island. Ministers have heard and are responding through these measures to the various representations made by business sectors.
Recognising the significant strain many local industries are under, the Government is today announcing a new Grant Support Scheme for those businesses which have been most impacted by our circuit breaker measures.
Under the terms of this scheme, we will provide financial support to businesses in sectors closed or materially trade-restricted by the public health measures.
Businesses including the self-employed will be able to claim a fixed monthly amount based on the rateable value of their business premises and the severity of the impact on them.
Payment will be in three tiers
That is up to £3,000 per month for a rateable value of up to £5000
Up to £5,000 per month for a rateable value of between £5,000 and up to £10,000
And up to £10,000 per month for a rateable value in excess of £10,000
The scheme will pay up to 100% of the eligible sum for any period that a business is forcibly closed, and 50% where public health measures significantly disrupted their trade.
Applications for the scheme will be made monthly in arrears and full details of the scheme, which will cover the period from January to April 2021, will soon be available on gov.je
Funding for this scheme will come from the Economic Recovery allocation in the 2021 Government Plan and is estimated will contribute a further £9.5million between January and April to further support businesses.
We will also be updating our Co-Funded Payroll Scheme.
Under this scheme the Government has already distributed £103 million to support local jobs since the start of the pandemic and, at its peak, one in four Islanders in work had their wages supported by the scheme.
This scheme will continue for all eligible businesses until at least April of this year, with a review in March.
For those businesses which have been forced to close because of our public health measures, we will increase the maximum monthly wage subsidy from 90% of £2,000 to 90% of £2,500.
We will also be increasing the available subsidy for those businesses to detriment plus 30%.
Finally, we will defer employer’s and employee’s social security contributions and GST for Quarter 1 and offer extended repayment terms of up to 5 years.
With the reopening of non-essential retail and close contact services announced this evening, and with further support now becoming available, I hope that it is clear that we are committed to continue protecting lives and livelihoods in Jersey throughout the whole duration of the pandemic.
I will now hand back to the Chief Minister.