Biz Support: Call To Add Retail And Close Contact

The Chief Executive of the Chamber of Commerce says he's disappointed that retail and close contact services are still not eligible for support through the co-funded payroll scheme.

More businesses can now qualify for funding - they include bars, restaurants, coffee and sandwich shops, and sole traders.

But the government says the likes of retail and hairdressing have not been added yet, because they want more information to understand the impact that restrictions are having on them.

Murray Norton says the Chamber will keep pressing the government to help these hard-hit businesses.

"From the information that we've had from the members of the Jersey Chamber of Commerce - who include those in the close contact services and those in the retail sector - they're telling us that they have been affected, some of them dramatically by the recommendation for people to work from home, which is the majority of office workers.

They need more information, that's fair enough. As soon as they've got that, they need to review this again and we'll be keeping a close eye on that.

The recommendation from government to work from home - the government needs to shoulder some of that responsibility and make sure they're supporting these businesses during this short window, we hope, before things return to normal."

Islanders have been asked to work from home 'where possible' since 4 January because of the fast-spreading Omicron variant of coronavirus.

The co-funded payroll scheme was reinstated just before Christmas to help businesses restricted by government restrictions aimed at limiting the spread of the variant.

Eligible businesses can claim up to £1,250 per employee if their income for December 2021 fell by more than 20% compared to December 2019.

They can submit claims in February if their detriment if income for January 2022 fell by more than 20% compared to January 2020.

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