A rise in shuttered restaurants and boarded-up bars is being predicted as the Covid-19 wage subsidy winds down.
At the beginning of July, 406,802 jobs were being supported by the government's support scheme. Now, a month and a half on, that figure has nearly halved to 216,969.
But for hospitality, there's real concern that it doesn't mean people are going back to work.
In a statement Finance Minister Grant Robertson said: he rejects the assertion that the Government hasn't been at the party with support for the hospitality sector.
He points out businesses in the accommodation and food services industry received just over $1 billion from the initial wage subsidy, which ran for 12 weeks, covering 164,000 jobs - 93 percent of the industry's jobs.
Hospitality businesses that receive all 22 weeks of the wage subsidy will have received cash payments of $12,887.60 per full time worker.