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Wage Subsidy Scheme evaluations

The Wage Subsidy Scheme (WSS) was developed and implemented in March 2020 under urgency as part of the Government’s COVID-19 Response. Firms were required to pass the subsidy on to employees.

The WSS’s purpose was to support businesses to maintain job attachment between employers and employees. Between March 2020 and December 2021 about $18.8 billion was provided to support more than 1.8 million jobs.

The evaluation of the WSS was led by the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) and overseen by a Cross Agency Steering Group with representatives from MSD, Treasury, Inland Revenue (IR), and the Ministry for Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and an external member from Deloitte.

The evaluation has three main components:

  • a process evaluation that considers how well the scheme was developed and implemented
  • an outcome evaluation that examines the extent to which the scheme achieved its intended outcomes, within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and other Government supports
  • a synthesis report that brings together the learning of both the other evaluations.

Access the Outcomes Evaluation reports through Motu