Positive measures contained within Government cost of living package

February 21, 2023

Ibec, the group that represents Irish business, says that the cost-of-living and cost of doing business measures announced by Government today will support business confidence and activity, and attention must now turn to ensuring the delivery of effective support to viable but vulnerable businesses. 

Ibec said that many of the measures will be welcomed by industry, including amendments to the Temporary Business Energy Supports Scheme (TBESS), and the extension of the 9% VAT for the Experience Economy. Measures contained within the package will also play an important role in containing inflationary pressures which remain elevated, the group added.

Ibec Executive Director of Lobbying and Influence, Fergal O’Brien stated: “Today’s package from Government contains many positive measures that will bring much certainty to businesses across the economy. 

“It is welcome to see reforms to the TBESS as the previous eligibility criteria and support levels were too restrictive, leading to poor take up from industry despite there being an ongoing energy affordability crisis. The support levels to date have been below that seen in other European countries, so today’s announcement will go some way to addressing the competitive disadvantage many businesses have faced in recent months. 

“It is also positive to see the 9% VAT rate extended for another 6 months. This policy has been instrumental in helping businesses stay afloat and maintaining many jobs across the country. Removal of this buffer at this time would have put many in the Experience Economy, particularly SMEs, in jeopardy, and would only have added to inflationary pressures and undermined international competitiveness. While business would have preferred to see the 9% VAT rate made a permanent fixture, today’s announcement will provide some relief and certainty.”