News and events

COVID-19 recovery and support

open this image in new window: COVID-19 Callaghan Innovation

This article was published on 23 June 2021

This is the central reference point for our current service status and support measures amid COVID-19. It also provides information on other government support measures for businesses.

Current service status

All of New Zealand is at Alert Level 1, except for the Wellington region which is at Alert Level 2.

There are strict rules for visitors and contact tracing measures in place at all our sites. If you have any questions about access, please reach out to your key Callaghan Innovation contact.

For ongoing Callaghan Innovation service status updates, please check this page regularly. You can also contact us on 0800 422 552 or


Callaghan Innovation support & initiatives

Updated R&D Tax Incentive (RDTI) support

The R&D Tax Incentive supports businesses to do R&D, and includes refundability options to provide extra cashflow support to R&D-performing businesses. More loss-making businesses now qualify to have their 15% R&D tax credit refunded in cash. For further information, contact your Callaghan Innovation relationship manager or visit the RDTI Hub website.

R&D Loan Scheme

We are not currently taking registrations for Callaghan Innovation's R&D Loan Scheme, as the current value of applications and waitlist registrations is reaching the scheme's limit. However, we are interested in tracking business R&D needs arising from COVID-19 impacts. 

We do welcome you to provide us with a picture of how your R&D has been impacted by COVID-19, along with your resulting needs, through our COVID-19 R&D Support Needs form. This will inform our ongoing planning and discussions for additional support in this space. 

General R&D Advice and Support

If you have any concerns about your R&D grants, Tech Incubator Startup Repayable Loans and general R&D programme, please contact your Callaghan Innovation relationship manager or 

Innovation Skills Programmes

A strong business and innovation base can help businesses come out of this crisis stronger. We are continuously developing and/or piloting new programmes to address capability gaps in product development and product-market fit. 

Our current Innovation Skills programmes that can help businesses accelerate or pivot are:

  • Innovation IP will help you identify and strategically manage IP
  • Lean will help you eliminate waste and improve your customer experience.
  • Digital Lean will help you build upon your Lean foundations and boost your competitive advantage through the use of Industry 4.0 technologies
  • Capital Education will help startups understand the NZ capital raising process.
Connect to the COVID-19 Response

Our digital networking platform, Scale-Up NZ, makes it faster and easier for ambitious businesses to find and connect with the people, capital and other help they need to innovate and grow, both here and offshore. Over 200 businesses on the platform now feature a “coronavirus” tag, identifying them as having COVID-19 response capability. Head here to learn more.

Key Events Updates

Several of our events have been postponed or moved online as part of the response to COVID-19. For all Callaghan Innovation event updates please visit our news and events section. 


Other COVID-19 Government Support for Businesses

There are a number of COVID-19 financial support schemes available to businesses, depending on your situation. These include: 

Short-Term Absence Payment   

The COVID-19 Short-Term Absence Payment is available for businesses, including self-employed people, to help pay their workers who cannot work from home while they wait for a COVID-19 test result.  Find out more on the Work and Income website.  

Leave Support Scheme   

The Leave Support Scheme covers eligible workers, including the self-employed, who can’t work from home and meet certain health criteria, e.g. they have COVID-19 or are a ‘close contact’ who has been told to self-isolate for 14 days. Find out more on the Work and Income website.  

New Wage Subsidy 

Information about a new Wage Subsidy to help businesses whose revenue has reduced because of moving to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 is available soon on the Work and Income website.  

Register here to find out when applications open  

Resurgence Support Payment 

Inland Revenue’s Resurgence Support Payment helps businesses across the country affected by Alert Level increases. Businesses and organisations have until 23 March 2021 to apply online in myIR. For more information visit the Resurgence Support Payment page. 

Find out more about your eligibility for support and how to apply at

Regional Business Partner Network support 

The RBP network is a government initiative to support small and medium-sized enterprises that are looking to grow and innovate. Find out about its support for businesses impacted by COVID-19 on the Regional Business Partner website.


Further Information

There are a number of government websites that have useful information about economic recovery activity and how to access it.

  • For updates on COVID-19 support information visit the Government’s Unite against COVID-19 website.
  • also provides information on COVID-19 support specific for NZ, and The Kiwi Business Boost helps with business information and support, including COVID-19 guidance, tailored to your business needs.
  •, Chambers of Commerce, RBPs and other local support agencies are running a series of webinars for businesses. 
  • Travel information for all travellers, student visa holders, migrant workers and employers can be found here.
  • ATEED’s Digital Assessment Tool will help you identify your website, marketing, people and digital needs, and understand the path to digital success.