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I am tired of retailers being blamed for high prices. I am also tired of hearing what happens in Ireland compared to Britain.
In Ireland there is employers PRSI ranging from 8.75% to 10.85%. This is a tax for the privilege of employing someone who would otherwise be claiming unemployment benefit.
This tax is on top of the gross salary paid to the employee and it is not applicable in Britain or any other European country.
The standard rate of VAT in Ireland is 6.5% higher and the lower rate is 8.5% higher than in Britain.
Rent and rates are 50% to 65% higher; electricity and telecommunication costs are 30% higher and excise duty for alcohol is 55% to 60% higher than in Britain.
Retailers in Ireland have to pay licence fees which are not applicable in Britain. These can range from €2,000 to €5,000 per annum depending on the type of business.
Also, the minimum wage is 28% higher here.
These are some of the costs, which the Government controls, that force prices skyward. It is not the retailer who is ripping off the consumer: it is the Government that is ripping off the retailer and the consumer.
Alex Cleland Jnr
14 Kilminchy Ave
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