Tuesday, 8 October 2019

  • Budget increases operational costs for small business
  • Increase in self-employed tax credit brings entrepreneurs closer to equal treatment
  • Small business tax incentive reforms welcome

The Small Firms Association (SFA) has criticised Budget 2020 for not being ambitious enough at reversing the impacts of uncertainty amongst entrepreneurs in the context of Brexit. SFA Director, Sven Spollen-Behrens, commented “Even in a Budget with very limited room for manoeuvre, the Government has missed an opportunity to address the many issues facing entrepreneurs, which would assist them to plan, invest and grow their businesses. However, the combined supports in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit announced today are a welcomed move to address the challenges that will be faced by some vulnerable sectors in our economy.

“Whilst we welcome the announcement of changes to KEEP, EIIS and the increase in the R&D tax credit to 30% for micro and small firms, it is regrettable that the Government has again ignored the SFA’s call to reduce Capital Gains Tax (CGT) to 20% across the board, to make investing in a business in Ireland more attractive. Our closest neighbour, the UK, is actively enticing entrepreneurs with a more beneficial tax treatment than Ireland. Making our tax system competitive with the UK in areas such as CGT would stimulate economic activity and add to our competitiveness.

“The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for the self-employed has come closer to parity with the PAYE Tax Credit with today’s announcement of an increase of €150 to €1500. However, the blatant discrimination that was due to finish in Budget 2018 has still not come to an end; the SFA will continue to campaign for the gap between EITC, and the PAYE Tax Credit (€1650) to close fully in next year’s Budget.

“Budget 2020 will further increase business costs for small firms with the decisions to raise Carbon Tax and commercial stamp duty as well as the expected announcement on the National Minimum Wage.

“Small firms are the backbone of the Irish economy, supporting them helps create and sustain jobs throughout the country. It is disappointing that Budget 2020 did not recognise their importance by introducing ambitious measures to support entrepreneurship”, Spollen-Behrens concluded.