Today, the NSW Government announced that it will subsidise half the quarantine costs for overseas agricultural workers. This includes workers in the meat processing industry.
The NSW Minister for Agriculture, Adam Marshall, has revealed that the Government will provide a 50 percent subsidy of the cost of mandatory quarantine to reduce the cost to industry from $3,000 per person to $1,500 per person for 2020-21.
Eligibility for the subsidy relates to overseas agricultural workers entering the country under the Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS) or Seasonal Worker Program (SWP).
The Minister stated that, “Mandatory hotel quarantine remains a critical part of the State’s COVID defence and any international arrivals are required to enter hotel quarantine in accordance with the Public Health Orders”.
Mr Marshall said the NSW Government had already implemented a range of measures to overcome the shortage, but today’s announcement was the most significant.
“Since international borders shut, we have worked with industry to find a solution that is cost-effective and today’s announcement allows industry and government to share the costs of mandatory quarantine,” Mr Marshall said.
AMIC welcomes this announcement to assist members who are ‘Approved Employers’ under these overseas worker schemes, who are not only sourcing overseas workers to fill labour shortages in their establishments, but also to reduce the costs associated with getting these workers to their plants.
AMIC will provide further information to NSW processing members in relation to the details to claim this subsidy.