Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe has confirmed the reduced VAT rate of 9% for the hospitality sector will expire at end of August 2022 as planned.
In his Budget 2022 speech to the Dáil, Minister Donohoe also acknowledged that the aviation sector had paid a particularly heavy price during the pandemic.
He said he is amending the taxation arrangements which apply to international air crews under Section 127B of the income tax code.
Minister Donohoe confirmed that the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) for businesses affected by the Covid-19 crisis will be extended to the end of April, but supports from the programme will be phased out by then.
While there will be no change to the EWSS over the course of October and November, a two-rate structure of €151,50 and €203 will apply from December until the end of February, falling to €100 for March and April, Mr Donohoe told the Dáil on Tuesday as he unveiled Budget 2022.
A reduced rate of employers’ pay related social insurance (PRSI) will no longer apply for the final two months of the programme, he said. The scheme will close to new employers from January 1st, 2022.
“These revised arrangements for EWSS strike a balance between helping those businesses which continue to need support, while recalibrating the scheme in light of the wider economic recovery,” he said.
A total of €17.5 billion has been paid out to date to individuals, households and businesses under the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP), the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) and the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS), according to the Government.
People aged between 19 and 23 will get half-price travel on public transport from the middle of next year as part of a new measure to be introduced in Budget 2022.
Under the scheme, those in this age group will be eligible for half-price fares on intercity buses and trains, long-distance buses, local buses, the Luas and Dart.
The new measure is not confined to students and will be available to all young adults in this age category.
The scheme is due to start in the middle of 2022, and the anticipated annual cost is €25 million.
The move is designed to encourage greater use of public transport and so reduce carbon emissions, as required under the Government’s climate action plan.