The stimulus comes as the state prepares to close its borders on Tuesday to stop the spread of the virus, which has already infected at least 315 people in Queensland.

Deputy Premier Jackie Trad says 24,000 businesses will get a payroll tax refund of $9000 on average as well as being given a payroll tax holiday, which will save them another $13,360 on average.

Households will also get a $200 rebate on their electricity bills and a $500 million fund will be set up up to find workers employment in cleaning, fruit picking and other public purpose jobs.

Large employers will also be offered industry assistance packages.

“That is focused solely on keeping businesses viable during the shutdown and also supporting workers who are displaced,” Ms Trad told the Courier-Mail.

Queensland will also close its borders on Tuesday, with anyone entering the state from the air or by road from midnight on Wednesday to be forced into quarantine for 14 days.

But it’s unclear how this will affect certain areas of the Gold Coast as the border runs through Gold Coast Airport and central Coolangatta.

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Australians are now banned from mingling publicly and in large groups, and must comply with strict new social shutdown policies.

The national closure of bars, pubs, clubs, casinos, gyms, indoor sports venues and religious venues is being enforced in Queensland, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said on Monday.

She said there was light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel but only if everyone followed orders to stay 1.5m away from each other, and observed the closures.

Hospitals have begun rescheduling less urgent surgeries to make way for those in need of treatment for COVID-19, and Queenslanders are being urged to donate blood.

 

AAP

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