A surge in new car sales and tobacco companies paying excise duty on cigarettes before plain packaging comes in has led to increased tax revenue for the Government.
Some €742m more than planned has been taken in at the Department of Finance with taxes overall up €1.9bn on last year.
The figures for the first six months of the year have been published this evening with 22.5bn taken in in taxes - nearly three quarters of a billion more than expected and €1.9bn more than this time last year.
New car sales and tobacco companies paying the excise duty on branded products before the introduction of plain packaging has led to a €400m surge in excise duty.
But VAT is down some €231m less than expected though it remains up on this time last year.
Corporation Tax is also almost 19% or €505m higher than expected.
Expenditure by Government departments is exactly where the Government forecast.