More than $50m paid out to local firms

More than $50million has been paid out to Otago and Southland businesses so far from the Government’s Covid-19 Support Payment.

In February, Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced the targeted payment for businesses struggling in the Omicron outbreak.

To be eligible for three fortnightly payments of $4000 plus $400 per full-time employee, businesses had to show a 40% drop in revenue over seven days in mid-February.

Latest figures published by the Inland Revenue Department revealed in the three payments to April 12, Otago and Southland businesses claimed $50.9million for about 5000 staff.

Of that, Otago businesses claimed abut $43.1million for about 4120 employees.

Meanwhile, Southland businesses claimed $7.8million for about 800 staff.

Nationally, just over $1billion has been paid out over the three payments.

Applications for the payments close on Thursday.

-- Riley Kennedy