SFA Reaction to Budget 2023
Responding to Minister Pascal Donohoe and Minister Michael McGrath’s Budget speeches, the Director of the Small Firms Association (SFA) Sven Spollen-Behrens said: “Today’s announcements to help businesses with their energy bills are to be welcomed.
“We are pleased to see the establishment of a Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme, which will be administered by Revenue and backdated to September. The SFA will engage with Government to support the proper and efficient administration of this new scheme, which will benefit, retail, wholesalers, suppliers, caterers, office-based businesses and the experience economy to mitigate the impact of rising energy costs. Additional funding for energy efficiency schemes will help small businesses become more energy efficient.
“Reducing taxes on jobs is essential to help indigenous enterprises attract and retain staff and maintain competitiveness, SFA welcomes the increase in the entry point to the top rate of tax and rise in the small benefit exemption. Measures to decrease the cost of childcare, household energy bills and promote the use of public transport through reduced fares will lead to improved labour market participation and ease some of the financial strain that employees are experiencing.
“We welcome the additional funding for the LEO network to extend supports to small firms employing more than 10 people. However, it is regrettable that the SFA’s call to make investing in a business in Ireland more attractive through a reduce Capital Gains Tax and changes to the Key Employee Engagement Programme (KEEP) and other tax measures, has again been ignored. The tourism and hospitality sectors are highly important for small firms and for the economy overall, it is very disappointing that the Government has decided not to extend the 9% VAT rate.
“The cost of doing business crisis is a battle on many fronts and today’s budget announcements don’t go far enough for small business owners facing increasing labour costs, insurance, commodity prices and rent pressures. These are hugely worrying times for small business, and for many, 2023 is going to be a difficult year”, concluded Spollen-Behrens.