Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Family face an estimated impact of $ 45 million due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Royal Family’s 2019-20 financial report was released by Royal Treasurer Sir Michael Stevens, also known as the Guardian of the Private Wallet, on Friday. While the majority of the spending it contains comes from before the global health crisis hit the world, he explained how the pandemic will leave a lasting effect on the incomes of the British royal family.
Stevens said the lack of income from visitors to the Royal Buildings would likely lead to an overall funding gap of £ 15m ($ 19m) over three years.
“If we look at our Core Sovereign Grant and the income we generate to supplement the Sovereign Grant, both of which supports the Queen’s official functions, we would expect a significant reduction in Royal Collection Trust revenues due to the impact of Covid -19 has had on their visitor numbers, ”Stevens said. This forms the bulk of an expected revenue shortfall, which we believe will be around £ 5million per year for the next three years. ”
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He added that the impact of the pandemic is also likely to cause a deficit of 20 million pounds ($ 25.4 million) in a 10-year, 369 million pound program to replace heating, plumbing and heating. dilapidated wiring at Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s London home.
Officials said the palace’s aging infrastructure, which saw its last major upgrade after World War II, is at risk of breaking down if not replaced.
Stevens stressed that while the pandemic will lead to a decline, the royal family is not seeking financial assistance from the government.
“In responding to these challenges, we do not intend to seek additional funding, but we will seek to manage the impact through our own efforts and efficiency,” he said.
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Buckingham Palace has already introduced a freeze on staff salaries and a halt on hiring.
Accounts show the monarchy cost British taxpayers £ 69.4million ($ 88.2million) for the year ending late March, an increase of 2.4million ($ 3.1million) compared to the previous year.
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The accounts also show Prince Harry and Meghan Markle paid an undisclosed sum to repay public funds for rent and renovations to their Frogmore Cottage home near Windsor Castle. The exact amount will appear in next year’s accounts. The home’s only renovation costs were £ 2.4 million ($ 3.1 million).
Earlier this year, Meghan and Harry announced their decision to step down as senior members of the Royal Family. The announcement included the couple’s plans to split their time between the UK and North America. Most recently, the two, along with their son, Archie, bought a home in Santa Barbara, California.
Stevens concluded that, despite the many changes the pandemic has made to future royal events, the royal family’s dedication to the citizens of the United Kingdom has not changed.
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“Although Covid-19 has temporarily changed the format of engagements and events, it has not changed the sense of continuity, solace and recognition they provide. Her Majesty’s program, supported by her family, will continue to develop meaningful ways of leading the nation during this time, ”added Stevens.
Buckingham Palace has been closed to public tourism since April, impacting Royal Family income that is not provided by the British Treasury.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.