COVID-19 has devastated numerous sectors of the world economy, and even royalty is not immune.
As People reports, with no end in sight to the ongoing pandemic, an estimate of the Queen’s finances indicates that lost revenue from cancelled tourist visits and assorted events at Buckingham Palace will drain $25 million from the royal coffers.
That forecast was made in a Palace briefing on Thursday by Sir Michael Stevens, Keeper of the Privy Purse, which controls the Sovereign Grant handling the funds to pay for “official duties of the Queen, 94, her family and maintenance of occupied royal residences,” notes People.
“If we look at our core Sovereign Grant and the income that we generate to supplement the Sovereign Grant, both of which support the official duties of the Queen, we are expecting a significant reduction in income from the Royal Collection Trust due to the impact COVID-19 has had on their visitor numbers,” said Stevens. “This forms the bulk of a projected shortfall in income, which we estimate will be around £5 million per year for the next three years.”
As People points out, the Sovereign Grant “is based on 15 per cent of the surplus profits of the Crown Estate income and has been set at $63 million.” However, in 2017 that was bumped up to 25 per cent for a 10-year period in order to pay for various repairs and upgrades, to the tune of $470 million.
Meanwhile, estimates of the income that had previously been projected have been reduced substantially due to the pandemic, and efforts are currently underway to explore cost-cutting measures to make up the difference. On the plus side, given the unlikeliness of any royal tours in the immediate future, those costs savings will “help to offset some of the shortfalls,” a senior royal source told the magazine.
“We are instructing our teams to look at ways they can be more efficient in supporting the Royal Family in delivering their programs,” the source added.