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December 10, 2012

Budget 2013 - North Kildare Chamber Response

Eilish Quinlan Acknowledging the ongoing fiscal challenges facing Government as we entered our sixth austerity Budget, North Kildare Chamber accepted some tough decisions regarding Government expenditure were unavoidable but expressed disappointment that more was not done to incentivise and support further business growth, essential to stimulating job creation.

Assessing the overall impact of the budget, North Kildare Chamber president Eilis Quinlan stated “positively, we acknowledge the focus that Government has placed on the vital role of SMEs in the economy, the reinforcement of its commitment to the 12.5% corporation tax rate, the absence of any increases to employer’s PRSI and that the much feared transfer of sick pay costs to employers did not materialise. In addition, the R&D tax credit expansion, fuel rebate for hauliers, seed and venture capital scheme, measures to improve liquidity as well as efforts to reduce bureaucracy impacting on SMEs are welcome.”

However, the president continued “when it comes to introducing new initiatives and incentives to support business growth, the measures within Government’s ‘ten point plan’ which specifically targets SMEs falls far short of the scale of initiative and innovation required to truly grow the level of business activity that Ireland now needs. This is compounded further by concerns around the impact of wider budget measures which will impact on consumer confidence and purchasing power, resulting in continuing challenges for particular aspects of the economy, most notably the struggling retail and hospitality sector.”

With the implementation of the property tax now planned for mid 2013, Eilis Quinlan re-echoed the Chamber’s “acceptance of the need to broaden the tax base to support local government in delivering services in order to reduce the disproportionate reliance on business funding for these essential services. All income generated through a property tax, should be retained and re-invested within the local authority in which it is generated. A failure to do so would represent a ‘double hit’ for local citizens and businesses who pay a tax without realising the benefits of it locally.”

The president concluded, “I very much welcome the Government’s recognition of the need to stimulate private sector regeneration in our cities and the acknowledgement of the requirement to support the development of high quality office accommodation to meet continually expanding FDI and indigenous industry needs.”