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Taoiseach: Programme for Government pledges stand

However, Enda Kenny wouldn’t discuss what might be on or off the table for Budget 2013.

Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY has insisted that the pledges given in the Programme for Government will be honoured.

RTÉ reports that Kenny refused to speculate on what may or may not be in the next Budget.

The Taoiseach’s comments come after ministers Brendan Howlin and Pat Rabbitte gave separate interviews suggesting that everything should be up for consideration in discussions on Budget 2013.

The Programme for Government gives commitments to preserve maintain current rates of income tax along with relevant bands and credits and to maintain social welfare rates. However, the latest IMF review of Ireland outlines some measures proposed by the government for 2013 which included broadening the “personal income tax base” as well as introducing a value-based property tax and restructuring motor tax.

In his interview, Rabbitte insisted that the government has not begun discussions on further cuts, saying “the process hasn’t even started”.

Fianna Fáil TD and party spokesperson on finance Michael McGrath criticised the government of scaring “the living daylights out of people” ahead of the Budget by refusing to rule out income tax increases and welfare cuts.

“The government repeatedly tell us that things are so much better now than when they came to office, it is hard to see how tax increases and welfare cuts could be ruled out as recently as December but are now on the table for budget consideration,” he said.

Public sector pay increments should be deferred, says Varadkar >

Budget 2013: Minister refuses to rule out income tax increases and welfare cuts >

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