Limerick Senator welcomes retention of low VAT rate for hospitality sector

Senator Maria Byrne

THE Government’s decision to retain the nine per cent VAT rate for the hospitality and tourism sector is a much-needed counter inflationary measure.

That’s according to Limerick Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne, who said that the extension of the reduced VAT rate, which was due to expire in August, until next year was “a crucial intervention.”

“We all know what happened over the last two years with the worldwide pandemic. Businesses closed and international tourism for 2020 and 2021 was practically non-existent. The hospitality and tourism sector suffered immensely,” Senator Byrne said.

“All pandemic support measures, such as Emergency Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS), have ended with businesses and consumers across the Mid- West having to contend with ever increasing inflation and escalating energy costs.

“Times are tough and I am glad to see Government is responding to their needs with the retention of the nine per cent rate. It is a crucial intervention.

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“This will help maintain and secure future employment for many while ensuring hospitality and tourism businesses have sustainable futures,” Senator Byrne said.

“Crucially for the shoulder months beyond August, this is vitally important for businesses to remain competitive for domestic and international tourists.

“I’m glad to see Government has responded to my calls and the industry’s representations on this issue. An early decision to provide certainty to all stakeholders involved is a good development,” she added.