Jersey's Government has announced that it is extending its scheme supporting Jersey businesses through the pandemic.

The scheme, which was introduced in April, was due to end on 31 August, but will now run until March 2021.

From September the amount of support businesses get from Government will be gradually reduced.

As well as extending the scheme, the Government is also lowering the threshold for support from 30% to 20%. This means businesses will only need to show a 20% reduction in income to qualify for support.

From August businesses claiming on the scheme will be asked to return to a broadly normal trading patterns, and will not be allowed to remain closed if it is safe to open.

This is a significant extension of the payroll scheme, which is a more substantial scheme than most jurisdictions worldwide, and gives greater flexibility and support to employers, employees and the self-employed. The extension to our payroll scheme will help to maintain the protection of jobs throughout the winter months.

Senator Lyndon Farnham, The Minister for Economic Development, Tourism, Sport and Culture.

The scheme will have cost an estimated £93 million by the end of August and the gradual tapering of the scheme until March next year will cost approximately another £26-£53 million.

The whole scheme is estimated to cost between £108 million and £137 million.

The Government subsidy will be gradually reduced from September through to March:

60%

September and October

40%

November and December

30%

January and February

20%

March

There will be no change to eligibility, but businesses will be able to claim for new or different employees, if those employees were Registered or Entitled to Work and on any payroll in March. Funding for the scheme has been confirmed by the Treasury until at least the end of December and, subject to approval of the new Government Plan by the States Assembly, until March 2021.

Deputy Susie Pinel, Jersey's Minister for Treasury and Resources,

Jersey's Government says it will continue to monitor the co-funded payroll scheme and will amend the scheme if a change in the prevalence of coronavirus in Jersey impacts on public health restrictions and associated trading.