Irish economic growth will grind to a halt and unemployment will creep above 5% this year under Italy-style quarantines to control the Covid-19 outbreak here, the Economic and Social Research Institute has projected in new forecasts.
Food supplements — with a range of exceptions — will, after all, be taxed at the rate of 13.5% for Vat, the Department of Finance has said, a move that has surprised industry groups that had long campaigned against removing their zero-rated tax benefits.
The Government appears to be drawing closer to formally conceding the tech giants, including Google, Twitter, and Facebook, which have significant bases in Ireland will be taxed by individual governments on the revenues they generate across Europe.
Central Bank governor Philip Lane has proposed that the Government back a revamped Special Savings Incentive Account (SSIA) scheme, more than 17 years after former finance minister Charlie McCreevy presided over a widely criticised €16bn scheme to encourage savers to set aside money on a regular basis.
The focus on tax policy over the years has changed. From the 1980s, the favoured sector was property, with tax breaks for purchases, investments, and sales in the form of things like mortgage interest relief, preferential rates of stamp duty, allowances against rental income and capital gains tax exemptions.