Kehoe questions SIPTU stance on 9% VAT that has provided jobs and growth for Wexford
Government Chief Whip Paul Kehoe TD has questioned the logic of SIPTU’s call this week to increase the 9% VAT rate for the tourism and hospitality sector as a new Fáilte Ireland report proves Government policy is providing jobs and growth for tourism in Co. Wexford.
Speaking about the SIPTU campaign, Minister Kehoe said;
“I think that the campaign launched by SIPTU over the last few days to increase the 9% VAT rate is inappropriate. I do not think the final weekend before the Budget is announced it should be used as a weapon by any side involved in ongoing union/employer discussions.
“Restaurant Association of Ireland figures from July 2014 state that the 9% VAT rate has led to the creation of 692 direct jobs and 318 indirect jobs in Co. Wexford in the past three years. These direct jobs alone have saved the taxpayers almost €14 million on social welfare payments.
“When this Government took office the economy was collapsing and thousands of jobs were being lost every month. The targeted reduction of VAT to 9% was the first of many steps taken by this Government to support businesses in the sector to create jobs. An estimated 30,000 jobs have been created in the sector and the continuing growth in tourism will I believe see more jobs created in the years to come”.
Commenting on the positive Failte Ireland figures published yesterday, Minister Kehoe said:
“Failte Ireland’s “Regional Tourism Performance in 2013” report confirms our policy decisions in the tourism sector have proved very lucrative for County Wexford in terms of jobs and rewards for the local economy.
“It states that in 2013 a total of 229,000 overseas visitors came to Co. Wexford, the 6 th highest county in the country for overseas visitors. Revenue generated from these overseas visitors was estimated to be worth €60 million to our local economy here in Co. Wexford.
“Spending by the 455,000 domestic visitors to the county last year jumped by €12 million up to €107 million from 2012. Co. Wexford is now in the top five most visited counties by domestic tourists”.
For further information and graphs please see the below links to reports and surveys from Failte Ireland