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Budget 2017 Submission

In our pre-budget submission we recommended government focus on three key areas based on feedback received from the Chamber Network:

  1. Supporting growth
  2. Where we need to invest
  3. Securing our future

Under each of the headings above, we outlined policy proposals for Government to consider. We have repeatedly called for the implementation of all of these proposals in our engagement with Government representatives throughout the year as well as in our lobbying activities.

We were pleased to see that many of our recommendations were included in the budget, in particular the reduction of Capital Gains Tax to 10%, the introduction of Childcare subsidies, the Budget Stabilisation fund and increased investment in education and skills. However we were disappointed at the lack of measures introduced to support businesses.

The table below provides an overview of our recommendations against the content of the budget.

Chambers Ireland’s Pre-Budget Submission

Budget 2017

Ensure equity in tax credits by ending discrimination of the self-employed

The Earned Income tax credit for the self employed will be brought closer in line with that of the PAYE worker, an increase by €400 will make the total €950 for the self employed

Bring equity to USC rates for owner-directors and the self-employed

Not delivered

Reduce the marginal tax rate to below 50%

The reduction in USC brings the marginal tax rate below the current 49.5% for PAYE workers

Reduce the capital gains tax 10%

Reduction of the 20% rate of Capital Gains Tax to 10% on disposals of qualifying assets up to a limit of €1 million in chargeable gains

Introduce social protection measures for owner-directors and the self-employed


Not delivered

Retain the 9% VAT rate for the hospitality and tourism sector



Support employee share ownership by changing tax treatment and mandatory application to all employees

  SME focussed share-based ownership incentive scheme for 2018. In planning stages, discussion with European Commission on this

Maintain the 12.5% Corporate Tax rate



 - Establish a vacant land tax, calculated based on land value

 - Implement the recommendations of the Kenny Report on compulsory acquisition of land by LAs

 - Bring forward to implementation of the Vacant Site Levy and increase the 3% rate


Not delivered

Prioritise rollout of the National Broadband Plan  

 An additional €5m for the National Broadband Plan is to be allocated, bringing the total allocation to €15m to expedite procurement process

Introduce a package of incentives to increase the uptake of low emission vehicles

  Tax relief on Electric Vehicles will be extended, as will VRT for hybrid vehicles and there will be relief from carbon tax for biomass fuels

Need to prioritise steady state maintenance of our road infrastructure

€390m for roads funding and 3 new major PPP roads projects will commence

Invest in the electrification of Ireland’s public transport and licenses taxi fleet  


This has been identified as a “key priority in the Government’s capital plan”, but no specific measure mentioned yet

Increase the capital allocation to the Dept of Education and Skills

  €9.5bn makes for a 16% increase in total education expenditure. A total of €36.5m will go to higher and further education

 - Refocus the National Training Fund to support SMEs and business productivity
 - Increase the provision of training to the long-term unemployed and early school leavers


Not delivered

 - Provide direct subsidies to childcare providers in the form of means-tested capital grants

 - Introduce childcare subsidies conditional on educational quality standards being met

 A Single Affordable Childcare Scheme will be introduced: means-tested subsidies based on parental income for children aged six months to 15 years, and universal subsidies for all children aged six months to three years. Subsidies to be paid to Túsla registered childcare centres.

- Increase flexibility in regulations governing pensions to allow workers to gradually transition into full retirement

- Develop a sustainable system for the funding of public sector pensions

- Introduce incentives to encourage enrolment in private sector pensions in the form of a subsidy

 -Not delivered.

  - €5 per week increase in national pension to be introduced in March 2017, along with 85% Christmas bonus.

 - No mention of pension reform.

Establish a budget stabilisation fund from general Government revenue surpluses

  To be established


Chambers Ireland Budget 2017 Submission can be read by clicking on the image below

In our pre-Budget 2017 Submission we call on Government to address three themes which we believe will ensure that Ireland can achieve broad based and sustainable economic growth:

  by ensuring that we have a sustainable revenue stream through a broad tax base and that our taxation system does more to support enterprise and encourage entrepreneurship


  by investing in infrastructure necessary not only to protect out ability to attract investment but also to ensure our indigenous economy can continue to grow.


  where we have highlighted priority areas that require swift policy intervention to help Ireland weather future economic headwinds and to ensure our sustainable growth. 



To view photos from from the launch of the Budget 2017 submission click here


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