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Kiwis living in Australia given access to coronavirus wage subsidy

Kiwis living in Australia given access to coronavirus wage subsidy

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced New Zealanders living in Australia will be able to access $1,500 fortnightly “JobKeeper” payments.

Kiwis living in Australia given access to coronavirus wage subsidy

Morrison said he had discussed the decision with Jacinda Ardern, after the New Zealand prime minister made a direct appeal to him for “a short-term exemption” to Centrelink restrictions on New Zealanders living in Australia.

“We have New Zealanders who have been making a life here, work here, connected to businesses here, they have commitments here and they own properties and rent properties,” said Morrison.

Under the JobKeeper scheme, businesses will be paid up to $1500 a fortnight per employee for the next six months.

The payment will be given to employers who have lost 30 per cent of their revenue or more in order to maintain job security amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Morrison said the payments are to keep people in their jobs even when the work dries up, and they will not just be for full-time workers.

The payment will apply to full-time and part-time employees, sole traders and casual workers if they have been with a business for over 12 months.

Employees stood down since 1 March will be eligible.

The payments are part of a $130 billion support package announced on Monday to help Australians on the verge of losing employment.

“Many countries may well see their economies collapse. We could see countries themselves fall into chaos,” Morrison said.

“This will not be Australia.”

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