Tourism businesses that do not qualify for the R200 million (€10.41m) Tourism SMME Relief Fund announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier this week may apply to the Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) for subsidies to fund their employees’ wages.

When providing details of the fund, Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, acknowledged that this would only provide relief to a small part of the tourism sector but pointed to the fact that larger businesses could find relief in some of the additional relief measures that will be funded from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF).

Minister of Employment and Labour, Thulas Nxesi, has confirmed that a National Disaster Benefit Fund would be launched soon. He said this fund would provide additional UIF cover for employees facing illness, reduced work time and unemployment.

“This benefit will be de-linked from the UIF’s normal benefit structure. This benefit will be at a flat rate equal to the minimum wage (R3 500 (€183)) per employee for the duration of the shutdown to a maximum period of three months,” he said, noting that further details would be announced in due course.

Meanwhile, the TERS programme will be expanded and expedited and will be overseen by the Council for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration.  

“One of the conditions is that the company embarks upon a turnaround or sustainability programme,” said Nxesi.

 “We have also given commitments to employers to assist them through payment holidays for UIF and Compensation Fund payments,” he added.

NOTE: To obtain application forms and all relevant details, send an email to: infoTERS@labour.gov.za- or call (012) 337 1997