Jobkeeper to cost $60bn less than originally forecast due to ‘reporting error’
Treasury reveals only half of the estimated 6.5 million Australians will access the coronavirus pandemic-related subsidy
Treasury says the jobkeeper wage subsidy program will now cost the budget $70bn rather than $130bn because of a reporting error in estimates of the number of employees likely to access the scheme, and because the impact of Covid-19 on the Australian economy has not been as severe as expected.
The error was reported by the department in a statement posted on its website on Friday afternoon. Treasury initially expected that 6.5 million Australians would access the subsidy, but the department has now halved that estimate, in part because the “level and impact of health restrictions” were not as severe or long-lasting as anticipated.