The Irish Tourism Industry Confederation has welcomed measures in the Budget including the reduced VAT rate and the financial scheme of up to €5,000 per week to support
enterprises most affected by Covid restrictions, and the €55 million business continuity fund to be administered by Fáilte Ireland
which, it says, “are all positive steps to help hospitality businesses survive
this existential crisis”.
ITIC CEO Eoghan O’Mara Walsh said that there was disappointment that the value of the wage subsidy scheme was not enhanced and this puts
tourism businesses under immense financial strain over the winter to maintain staff while demand is so negligible.
“The devil is in the detail as with all budgets” said O’Mara Walsh “but we broadly support the measuresbrought in today and give credit to the Government for acknowledging that tourism and hospitality has been one of the hardest hit sectors by the pandemic”.
On ITIC’s prompting the last Government had set up a Tourism Recovery Taskforce back in Mayindependently chaired and with strong representation of industry leaders. Minister Catherine Martin brought the Taskforce report to cabinet last week and the survival recommendations were plainly taken
“Budget 2021 is a very important first step in ensuring the survival of tourism businesses over the next few months” said O’Mara Walsh noting that Covid and a hard Brexit will continue to wreak havoc on oneof Ireland’s most important industries and its biggest regional employer. “It is vital that tourism support
is maximized from Government so that as many businesses can survive a long and cold winter when demand will unfortunately be very weak” he said.
ITIC also welcomed Ireland’s adoption of the pan European international travel agreement and urged Government to implement it fully including developing a comprehensive pre-travel testing regime. “If Irish tourism is to prosper again we need to survive the next 6 months and then see international arrivals
resume in a safe manner” said O’Mara Walsh.