Thursday, 19th August, 2021

Financial Support

The government are advising that if your business cannot operate because of Alert Level 4 restrictions or you will lose revenue, you can apply for the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy scheme to help keep paying your staff. Businesses anywhere in New Zealand can apply for the Wage Subsidy Scheme if they are eligible.

“This information is positive and will provide relief for many South Canterbury businesses,” said Wendy Smith.

The wage subsidy is paid in a 2 week lump sum and has been increased to recognise the increased cost of wages at $600 per week for each full-time employee and $359 per week for each part-time employee

“Remember as an employer you must pass on the full wage subsidy to your employee, if the wage subsidy is more than your employee's pay, you can continue to pay them at their normal rate”. 

If your business has to physically close but your employees can work from home, and you are not eligible for the Wage Subsidy Scheme, you need to keep paying them their usual salary or wages.

Applications for the August 2021 Wage Subsidy will open on Friday 20 August 2021 at 9am and will be open for 2 weeks. You need to apply through Work and Income.

The COVID-19 Resurgence Support Payment will also be available and this helps to cover wages and fixed costs for businesses who have been directly affected when there is an increase to Alert Level 2 or higher for a week or more. To be eligible, your business must have experienced at least a 30% drop in revenue or a 30% decline in capital-raising ability over a 7-day period, due to an increase in Alert Levels.

Businesses will be able to receive $1,500 per business plus $400 per full-time employee (FTE), up to 50 FTE. The maximum payment is $21,500 If you're a sole trader, you can receive a payment of up to $1,900. Applications for the COVID-19 Resurgence Support Payment will open at 8am on 24 August 2021. You need to apply through Inland Revenue. 

Advice and support is also available through the South Canterbury Chamber of Commerce so visit the South Canterbury website

in the first instance or call one of the Chamber team to talk through the issues you are facing.

“Joining the Chamber ensures you receive regular updates as the situation evolves and the links to the most recent information.  The Chamber’s role is to support local business and together we will get through this – again,” said Wendy Smith CE of the Chamber.



Essential workers are now getting priority vaccinations and the Chamber of Commerce is working with the South Canterbury District Health Board to reach the businesses who are keeping South Canterbury open and providing vital services.


“Remember this is a stressful time for everyone, stay engaged, phone the Chamber or talk to other business owners and support each other” said Wendy Smith.  “If the Lockdown is extended we will look to launch our regular Zoom Workshops to build connection and provide relevant information and support” said Wendy Smit



For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Wendy Smith, Chief Executive, phone 027 229 2949

The South Canterbury Chamber of Commerce is the voice of South Canterbury business, serving the community since 1905. With over 530 members and with a strong national and international Chamber family, we work together to build better business outcomes.  We recognise that healthy business cultures lead to the improved wellbeing of all South Cantabrian’s.