Australia to pay coys AU$1,500 in wage subsidies per employee to keep workers

  Australian companies will get 1,500 Australian dollars (922 dollars) a fortnight in wage subsidies per employee to keep their workers salaried during the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday.

“The announcement was part of the 130-billion-dollar economic package.

“Economic package to support the jobs and livelihoods of what we anticipate will be 6 million Australians who will need that lifeline in the months ahead.

“According to the plan, businesses and non-profits that have taken a 30 per cent hit to turnover due to the coronavirus will be given wage subsidies of up to 1,500 dollars a fortnight for each worker.

“This is to keep the staff in jobs even when the work dries up,’’ Morrison told newsmen in Canberra.

According to him, the amount, which will continue for six months, is about 70 per cent of the median wage in Australia.

“We want to keep the engine of our economy running through this crisis, although payments will start flowing in the first week of May, but they will be backdated to March 30.

“Even those who have been stood down since March 1 will be eligible.

“The subsidies will benefit all full-time, part-time, and casual workers who have been with their employer for at least a year, as well as sole traders,’’ Morrison added.

This is the third and biggest round of economic stimulus by the Australian government, which has already pumped in 70 billion dollars to tackle the economic hit of coronavirus.

“In the very worst of circumstances, we could see countries themselves fall into chaos, this will not be Australia,’’ Morrison said. (dpa/NAN)