A Strong Economy to support a Fair Society
Maintaining a strong economy and delivering full-employment by 2020.
The services and opportunities that contribute to a fair society are underpinned by a strong economy. Fine Gael is committed to meeting the needs of a growing population and to repair the damage to our economic and social infrastructure from the economic collapse and cuts in public expenditure.
We want to deliver the following:
- Sustainable full employment which means an extra 200,000 jobs by 2020, of which 135,000 will be outside of Dublin, leading to more people at work than ever before.
- Implementing a national and regional Action Plan for Jobs and reduce the unemployment rate to 6%.
- Maintain Ireland’s 12.5% corporation tax, while reducing the rate of Capital Gains Tax for new start-ups to 10% from 2017
- Continue to phase out the USC as part of a wider medium-term income tax reform plan.
- Increase the Earned Income Tax Credit from €550 to €1,650 for the self-employed, to match the PAYE credit, by 2018.
- Explore the mechanisms through which SMEs can reward key employees with share options in a tax-efficient manner.
- Introduce a PRSI scheme for the self-employed and provide a supportive tax regime for entrepreneurs and the self-employed.
- Increase the Small Benefits Exemption (voucher) from €500 to €650, which is equivalent to approximately one week’s wages for those on the average industrial wage.
- Seek to deliver €1bn per year from new sources of finance to supplement normal bank offerings to SMEs.
- Improve smaller Irish businesses’ access to the €8bn public procurement market in Ireland.
- Facilitate the return of 70,000 emigrants increasing the pool of local talent.
- Ensure 85% of premises in Ireland has access to high speed broadband by 2018, with 100% access by 2021.