The Construction Industry Federation (CIF) welcomed the introduction of multi-annual budgeting for the Public Capital Programme as they believe this will reduce uncertainty and should eliminate the ‘stop go’ approach to public capital investment.
The group warned that the 2004 Budget cannot be seen in isolation from the huge additional burden which the increase in development levies pose for the competitiveness of new commercial and industrial construction and for the price of housing.
The CIF welcomed the government's decision to allocate €30m for spending on school buildings.
Meanwhile the Irish Software Association strongly welcomed the decision to extend the BES and the Seed Capital Scheme to 2006, saying it would allow the software industry to survive and grow in a current environment where funding is now difficult to attract.
The Irish Exporters Association were pleased with the budget's infrastructure spending commitments, but it warned the diesel excise increase would hit exporters hard, and increase inflation back to high levels although the aim of keeping inflation down is a major objective of the budget.