The Government is to increase the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Support payment for people who have been laid off due to the virus from €203 to €350.
The payment will also apply to the self-employed affected by the virus.
The Cabinet has also approved an emergency wage subsidy scheme under which the Government will pay 70% of a workers salary up to a cap of €410 per week net – equivalent to the after-tax income of a worker on around €40,000.
The scheme will initially run for 12 weeks, and employers will be free to top-up the Government’s element of the salary.
The scheme is targeted at companies hit by the collapse of economic activity triggered by the coronavirus outbreak – and employers seeking to avail of it would have to demonstrate a reduction in income of at least 25%, along with cash flow difficulties.
It is understood that the aim is to keep employees and employers connected, and make it easier to restart businesses when the crisis ends.