Business Support

We know that businesses are facing very real challenges because of Covid-19, and we want to make sure you get the help and support that you need.

On this page we’ve provided you with links to Government support, information and resources, as well as where you can find helpful local advice and support.

Ask for business advice online

A support site for small businesses to ask questions and get help from a whole range of business advisors -


The Apprentice Support programme funds four initiatives to help employers to retain and bring on new apprentices. 


  1. The Apprentice Boost Initiative is a $380.6 million broad-based wage subsidy to for employers to help you keep existing apprentices and employ new ones. It will be available to employers in all industries who have formal apprenticeship schemes for at least 20 months. Amounts will vary depending how far through an apprentice is in their training but if you have apprentices in a recognised New Zealand scheme you will get up to $12,000 per first year apprentice and $6,000 per second year apprentice. This initiative will be delivered by the Ministry for Social Development and will be available from August 2020. Further details will be available soon on how to apply for the subsidy.

  2. Funding for the existing Mana in Mahi programme, which helps employers provide on-the-job support for employees, is being expanded by $30.3 million in new funding. This will enable the programme to provide 24 months of support per participant (up from the current 12 months), and to provide an increased wage subsidy amount of up to $16,000 per first year participant, and up to $8,000 per second year participant. Additional pastoral care and other support will also be provided on top of this wage subsidy amount. The programme is delivered by Work and Income and if you think you have an opportunity to support someone, visit Manu in Mahi.

  3. The seven existing Group Training Schemes will be supported by a $19 million fund to ensure they remain viable following the Covid-19 lockdown. This will enable the schemes to continue to employ apprentices and trainees and provide related services to host businesses, where those businesses (mainly construction-related) are unable to support their apprentices. This scheme is delivered by the Tertiary Education Commission.

  4. The Regional Apprenticeships Initiative is a new regional apprenticeship scheme which will invest in new apprenticeships in regional New Zealand and particularly support displaced workers and Maori and Pacific peoples into jobs. More details on this will be released shortly.


As an employer you will be able to access support from one of the above support programmes (except the Group Training Schemes fund which is not available for individual employers) and this will depend on the type of apprentice or pre-apprentice trainee you employ. If you have laid off an apprentice, you can rehire that apprentice and then receive support from Apprentice Boost.


All employers who have an apprentice will be able to receive a base subsidy rate up to $12,000 per annum for first year apprentices and $6,000 per annum for second year apprentices through the Apprentice Boost Initiative. Mana in Mahi and some Regional Apprenticeships participants will get a higher subsidy to reflect the different level of need of individual apprentices (or pre-apprentice trainees) involved.


For more information you can visit Work and Income.

Business Mentor

Business mentors can help you navigate changes and challenges.  Fresh, supportive eyes can be just what you need.  Sign up here with the Business Mentor NZ scheme:

Business Resilience Workshops

Free workshops for all business owners and operators to stay informed and build resilience.  Topics include e-commerce, building capital reserves, knowing when to stop, working with a mentor, cashflow planning, wage subsidy information etc.  In person with experts at 3Mile every Friday at 1pm, or via zoom.  Sign up here.

Commercial leases and mortgages

For information about changes to help commercial tenants and landlords go to

Free support to sell online

Is your business not online? Swiftly can help you sell your stuff on the internet in three easy steps, for free! 


Insolvency relief

For more information about insolvency relief for businesses affected by Covid-19, see


Love Local - Wairarapa

We know our local businesses need support now more than ever. That’s why we’re encouraging people to buy local and connecting them to our amazing businesses. Check out all the information via Destination Wairarapa:

Managing health and safety

The emergence of Covid-19 has created work health and safety risks that need to be carefully managed. WorkSafe offers comprehensive advice and guidance for businesses and workers.


Managing recruitment, employee training or redundancies

Work and Income can help with a range of services for employers from recruiting new staff to helping with redundancies - see


Keeping up your networks is an important part of doing business - find collaborators, supporters, partners and customers this way.  Local business networks exist in Masterton ( ), Martinborough (, Carterton ( ), Greytown ( and Featherston (

Small business loan scheme and tax relief

If your business has less than 50 full-time equivalent staff, you may be eligible to receive a one-off loan. The maximum amount loaned is $10,000 plus $1,800 per full-time-equivalent employee. The annual interest rate will be 3% beginning from the date of the loan being provided. Interest will not be charged if the loan is fully paid back within one year. Read about tax relief and the Government’s interest-free loan scheme for small businesses impacted by Covid-19. Check out

Support for Pasifika businesses and sole traders

Pacific Business Trust offers practical business assistance and support with personalised attention for Pasifika organisations and sole traders. 

Support for whenua businesses

Te Puni Kōkiri provides information to help you with your whenua-related business as well as access to general support for you and your whānau. See

Targeted Training Subsidy (Apprenticeships)

The Government has made it easier for New Zealanders who want to train in industries where demand is expected to grow as the country recovers from COVID-19. Read more.

  • The Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) will pay costs of learners of all ages to undertake vocational education and training

  • Apprentices working in all industries will have costs paid

  • High demand areas, including in regional New Zealand, targeted

  • In many cases apprentices, trainees and learners at tertiary providers will save between $2500 and $6500 per year.


Wage subsidy scheme

Find out if you are eligible and how to apply for the Governments wage subsidy scheme at  



Get access to online webinars, business advice and support resources. The WellingtonNZ team can also help you access the Government’s Capability Voucher Funding which helps business owners to access business training and coaching services, by providing them with up to 50% subsidy towards the registered service cost.

Workplace operations at Level 1

All businesses can operate at Alert Level 1 and at Alert Level 1 everyone can return without restriction to work, school, sports and domestic travel, and you can get together with as many people as you want.  Read the full guidelines here: