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Tuesday 28 March 2023 Dublin: 8°C
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Taoiseach: 'No cliff edge to cost-of-living supports at the end of February'
Discussions will take place in the coming weeks on what further supports will be needed.

THERE WILL BE “no cliff edge” to cost-of-living supports for families and businesses at the end of February, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said. 

Speaking to the media after Cabinet met in Farmleigh House in the Phoenix Park today, Varadkar said there is some evidence that inflation has peaked and may come down over the next couple of months.

However, he said that this might no be reflected in falling prices.

“There’s a big difference between inflation going down and prices going down. So the fact that prices remain very high, I think it’s going to continue to be difficult for families over the next few months, for businesses as well,” he said.

The three party leaders and key ministers will discuss over the next few weeks what more the government can do to help families and businesses with the cost-of-living, said Varadkar. 

When asked by The Journal if a new cost-of-living package measures will be rolled out or if current supports be extended, the Taoiseach said “we’re not going to have a cliff edge at the end of February”. 

The disconnection moratorium for all domestic customers to scheduled to end on 28 February 2023.

The 9% VAT rate is due to return to 13.5% at the end of February and the excise decrease is also scheduled to end. Many business supports are also due to cease next month.

Mentioning those specific supports, the Taoiseach said:

“We all agreed today that we couldn’t have a cliff edge in that sense. But no decisions have been made yet as to what schemes might continue, what might not, we will sit down the key ministers involved in the next few weeks and examine that and see what we can come up with.

“But we haven’t made any decision on that as of today. But suffice to say that we don’t envisage a cliff edge at the end of February where all supports will end and all taxes will go back up in one fell swoop.”

While Varadkar said it is still too early to conclude that inflation has peaked, he believes that prices will not fall at the same rate.  

“I don’t think we’re going to see prices go down or go down significantly. And that means that there will continue to be families and businesses that are going to struggle with the cost of living throughout the year,” he added. 

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