Coronavirus wage supplement extended to May and June

Government's supplement covering wages for businesses impacted by COVID-19 extended for two more months

The government's COVID-19 wage supplement has been extended to May and June
The government's COVID-19 wage supplement has been extended to May and June

The government's coronavirus wage supplement has been extended for two more months.

The wage supplement - which is being offered to companies to cover part of the wages of their employees due to the impact of COVID-19 - will now also be offered in May and June.

Under Annex A of the coronavirus financial package, sectors falling in this category have the full five-day week wage payments, at €800 per month per employee, covered by the government.

For those sectors falling under Annex B, the government is paying one day's wage per week based on a monthly salary of €800.

In a statement on Thursday, Economy Minister Silvio Schembri said that more than €25 million have been disbursed so far as part of the COVID-19 wage supplement, contributing to 87,808 jobs being saved.

Anyone applying for the wage supplement in May will be paid for May onwards, Schembri said, since applications for both March and April supplements had to be submitted by 30 April.

Those who already applied for the COVID wage supplement in March and April do not need to apply again. They will continue to benefit from the the supplement until further notice.

When compared to last week, the number of applications received increased by 700 new applicants this week, amounting to 18,986 applications covering 87,808 employees.

More than €25million have been disbursed so far as part of the COVID19 wage supplement, an increase of €15million when compared with last week.

Moreover, €142,000 has been disbursed so far under the Teleworking Scheme, which is expected to increase to €185,000.

Plans to restart economy 'at advanced stage'

Schembri said that discussions with the Health Authority with regards to the economy's restart strategy are now at an advance stage.

“The uplifting of restrictions in some economic sectors shall be done in a gradual manner through a well-thought out and studied plan taking into consideration the economic and social context," the minister said.

"The slow opening shall take its time and it is essential for everyone to work hand in hand. In such a dynamic situation that is constantly evolving, as a government, we want to give peace of mind and certainty”.

Schembri assured that during the slow opening process of the economy, the economic support measures shall pursue till some businesses recover substantially. 

The government, he emphasised, will keep on helping businesses.

Malta Enterprise CEO Kurt Farrugia noted that 76% of all wage supplement applications have already been processed.

He underlined that the focus was to continue assistingcompanies and the self-employed in their operations, and to prepare for a post-COVID-19 scenario.

"One must reiterate the importance of applicants checking their mailbox and of submitting their reply regarding the evaluation outcome," he stressed, adding that there were 2,000 applications which had been evaluated, but which were still pending a reply from the clients concerned on whether they accepted the results of the evaluation process.