Budget 2014: The main points

Keep up with all the main announcements in today's Budget speeches.

Budget 2014: The main points


• No increase to income tax rates, USC, or VAT.

• Excise duty up by 10c per pint of beer / cider, 50c per bottle of wine, and 10c per pack of cigarettes.

• No increase on excise duty for fuels, including petrol and diesel

• Dole payments will be €100 for 18-24 year olds, €144 for 25 year olds.

• DIRT tax on savings interest has been increased to 41%

• Medical cards will be reviewed, and over 70s income thresholds reduced

• Maternity benefit reduced to €230 per week for new applicants.

Noonan: Budget 2014 'could have been tougher'

Off-Licence Association claims alcohol rise 'will drive out-of-State sales'

Irish Heart Foundation condemns inaction on sugar tax


3:54 Alan Shatter has announced, through the medium of Instagram, an extra €9m for the Garda vehicle fleet.

3:45 Further measures which were not included in either speech:


• An increase in prescription charges to €2.50

• GP visit cards will be provided instead of retention of full medical card on return to work


• Discontinuing mortgage interest supplement for new applicants and winding down current scheme over 4 years.

• An increase in contribution to rent and mortgage interest supplement by €5 per week

• Cut to RTE of €5m for those allowed a free TV licence

• Discontinuing €850 bereavement grant from January 1

3:34Howlin finishes his speech as the opposition is called upon.

3:32Justice: additional Garda funding for vetting service, and Howlin has also re-iterated garda recruitment will begin next year.

3:31: Education: €8.7bn to education sector. Not increasing class sizes. 1,250 new teachers to be recruited. €5m investment in books-to-rent scheme.

Entitlement to Illness Benefit increased from 3 days to 6 days – will save €22m

The rate of maternity benefit to will be reduced to €230 per week for new claimants from January next to save €44 million.

3:29: Income thresholds for over 70s medical cards reduced: €900 couple and €500 for single. Medical cards will be reviewed for those no longer eligible, saving €113m.

3:27: €37 for free GP care under 5 years old. Health budget will be increased by €187m.

3:26 Youth dole cuts announced: €100 each week for 18-24, €144 for 25 year olds. €160 for those on the Back to Education scheme.

3:25:€1.6bn to be spent on training and work placement schemes. Split between Departments of Social Protection and Education. 94,000 places reserved for long-term unemployed.

3:22: €10m spent on Priory Hall. Another €10m for unfinished housing estates "resolution" fund.

3:21Lottery licence sale proceeds will be spent on children's hospital (€200m), and also on road projects, insulation, housing adaptation grants and more.

3:20 National Pensions Reserve Fund to be reworked for investment in local projects within Ireland.

3:18: Investment in 28 school projects, road networks, and local authority housing insulation programme.

3:16 Private capital to be used in new pilot scheme of "social impact investment". Pilot scheme will focus on combating homelessness.

3:15:Public service numbers will be adjusted to allow for extra staff in teaching, medical and police, Howlin announces, despite public pay bill reduction of €500m.

3:14: Howlin thanks public service for their sacrifices: 17% cut in pay bill, 10% reduction in sizes. "These ravings need to be protected … and sustained."

3:12:Population increased by 350,000, jobseekers up by 120%, those in education up 8%. Medical card holders up to 40% of population - 1.89 million people have one.

3:09: €1.6bn in reductions, Howlin says.

3:07: Budget "seeks to minimise" hardship and austerity on the Irish people, Howlin claims in his opening.

3:06: Noonan commends the Budget to the house to both applause and heckling. Howlin steps up for his speech.

3:04: Post-bailout support fund to be discussed after the budget with EU and IMF.

3:05No increase in income tax, USC, tax rates, VAT, or excise on petrol and Diesel.

3:02Pensions: Existing pension levy will be increased to .75% until the end of 2014, when a new 0.15% levy on pension funds will take effect from 2015.

3pm: DIRT tax on savings bumped up to 41%.

2:58 DUTY: Beer +10c, Wine+50c, Cigarettes +10c. Noonan says this must be viewed in light of 9% hospitality VAT rate. Effective midnight tonight.

2:56Abolishing the Top Slicing Relief on all ex-gratia lump sum payments made in respect of retirements, or terminations. Medical insurance premium which will be eligible for tax relief capped at €1k per adult, €500 per child.

2:56: Projections for debt-to GDP ratio: 120% by end of 2014, 18.4% by end of 2015 , 114% at end 2016.

2:55Public spending in 2014 will be €52.9bn.

2:53Employment expected to grow by 1.5% this year and next, GDP expected to grow 2% in 2014.

2:52 Deficit forecasts: 7.3% in 2013, 4.8% in 2014, 2.9% in 2015.

2:50:Increase on limit of loan applications that can be appealed to credit review office from €500k to €3m. Subsidised financial training programmes for small businesses will also be provided.

2:50"The Government is a supporter of Credit Unions," Noonan says.

2:48 New powers for Revenue combating the "black economy" including counterfeit fuel, tobacco and alcohol.

2:48Magdalene laundries victims' payments will be tax exempt.

2:47There will be a new "start your own business" scheme for those who have been out of work for 15 months.

2:45Capital gains tax relief for entrepreneurship disposing of assets to free up revenue for reinvestment - will be 50% of CTG.

2:44: "To create jobs, we need to support the creation of new businesses," Noonan says.

2:43: "100% committed" to 12.5% corporate tax rate. "This will not change." Noonan publishing new tax document stating clearly Ireland's approach to international tax issues.

2:42: NAMA will have approved €2bn in investment by 2015 - will include 4,500 new apartments and houses in Dublin. Will make funding available in loans for purchase of commercial property.

2:40: Tax incentives for home renovation on primary residences of 13.5% for Cork, Galway, Kilkenny, Dublin.

2:38: Farming - capital gains tax will be modified to make it easier to dispose of farmland. Flat rate addition to rise from 4.8% to 5%.

2:37: Tax incentives for the agriculture and food businesses will be subject to a full cost-benefit analysis.

2:36:9% rate for hospitality industry will be retained. Air travel tax to be abolished from April 1.

2:35:€500 million in 25 new "pro-business" measures.

2:33:Noonan confirms €3.1bn in adjustments, €2.1bn of which will come from expenditure cuts and revenue increases. Aiming for a deficit of 4.8% in 2014.

2:31:"The story of insolvent Ireland is known to all our people," Noonan begins, as he recites an overview of the last few years. He is covering the achievements of the Government to date.

2:30:The Dáil chamber has filled up and we're about to get under way.

2:27: Minister Noonan's Budget speech is due to begin imminently.

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