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Transfers and taxes can change human behaviour

Fiona Finn (“Immigrants not expecting welfare”, Irish Examiner, Nov 4) asserts that Peter O’Dwyer’s article (Oct 29) ” deceives by omission”.

In her own letter, however, she overlooks how Irish welfare payments are frequently more favourable then those on offer elsewhere eg Eastern Europe. Child Benefit is a case in point. Indeed, welfare benefits receivable here might even in certain cases eclipse earnings available at home. All EU nationals are legally eligible for income support at the same payment rates as the nationals of the host EU country concerned.

The observable, though inconvenient fact, however, is that inter-state income disparities have incentive/dis-incentive aspects.

Both transfers and taxes can change human behaviour — for better or worse.

JA Barnwell

St Patrick’s Road

Dublin 9


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