The JobKeeper payment was developed in the second half of March in response to a steep deterioration in economic activity and employment.
JobKeeper had three objectives: supporting business and job survival, preserving the employment relationship, and providing needed income support.
Treasury completed a three-month review of the JobKeeper payment in June 2020, informed by the status of the coronavirus outbreak and the economy.
The review found that the JobKeeper payment met its initial objectives: to support business and job survival, preserve employment relationships, and provide needed income support. However, it noted that the labour market remains weak, with a continued need for macroeconomic support. An appropriately targeted extension of JobKeeper would continue to provide assistance to the most affected businesses and support recovery.
The Australian government has announced it is extending the JobKeeper payment until 28 March 2021, and is targeting support to those organisations who continue to be significantly impacted by the coronavirus. The extension of JobKeeper will include a requirement for businesses to demonstrate an actual decline in turnover, ensuring those businesses most in need are able to access assistance. JobKeeper payments will be paid at two tiers, reflecting varied working arrangements.