Advice and financial support is available to businesses and workers in the Stratford District.

Venture Taranaki will work directly with business owners and managers to help deal with the impacts of Covid-19.

Chief executive at Venture Taranaki, Justine Gilliland says Coronavirus Covid-19 is rapidly affecting economies around the globe and communities around the Mountain.

"While Taranaki has been noted as having a low risk of seeing the virus, our businesses, enterprises and regional economy will be heavily impacted for months to come."

Advertisement

Yesterday the government announced a substantial package of financial support directly available to businesses and workers.

"What all this means for businesses and workers in Stratford and Central Taranaki is that where impacts are being felt, there is advisory through Venture Taranaki and financial support through the Ministry of Social Development available to them.

"The Ministry of Social Development is the primary contact for wage and income support, and Venture Taranaki is working closely with them and the Taranaki Chamber of Commerce, and as part of the overall regional management response."

In the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government boosted funding to the Regional Business Partner network to enable an extension of business advisory services to affected businesses.

"This will see Venture Taranaki, as Taranaki's Regional Business Partner, scale up its services in working directly with business owners and managers to help deal with the impacts of the event."

Justine says information how Venture Taranaki can support local businesses will be available in the coming days.

"While the total package nationwide is $4m, only phase one has been released by central government to date, of which a small portion of is allocated to the Taranaki region.

"Regardless of that, Venture Taranaki's core business advisory services remain available to all enterprises, across the region."

Advertisement

She says there is an increase in Covid-19 related queries and advisory support.

"Our existing Business Mentoring service is also one that may be valuable to enterprises at this time."

"Foremost in this is the $500 million investment into health response, as protecting our people remains the most important priority for our community and nation.

"The investment of $8.7 billion into businesses and wages will help affected businesses maintain cashflow, and bridge gaps in wages, which should help to bring confidence to both enterprises and their staff."

She says there are expected future measures in May's recovery budget.

"Were working with the national network of agencies like ourselves to help provide feedback and ideas to government on what would be of most value."

She says the best response is for everyone to look after their own health and hygiene.

"This includes frequent and good hand washing, practicing social distancing and minimising prolonged contact with others where possible.

"If we are unwell, have been overseas recently, or have come into contact with a confirmed case, then we need to self-isolate immediately and effectively."

It is also important to keep supporting local businesses (especially hospitality and tourism offerings) and maintain contact with our communities, while adhering to the health measures in place."