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Tax 'grinch' calls on government to hold off on cuts

Chambers Ireland chief wants to see more signs of recovery before easing tax burden.

Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

CHAMBERS IRELAND HAS called on the government to hold off on any cut in income tax rates until the economic recovery is locked in and strong rates of growth return.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Chambers Ireland chief executive Ian Talbot said that he didn’t want to be a “grinch” on the tax question, but argued that a cut under the current circumstances would be “ill-advised”.

The government has dangled the prospect of measures to ease the tax burden on Irish consumers, including an increase in the level at which the higher rate of tax will be applied.

However, Talbot said he would prefer to see a more general recovery in the Euro area and among Ireland’s main export markets before tax cuts are approved.

“We’re not saying we don’t need one, but now is not yet the right time.”

He said that tax cuts should wait until the Euro area was completely fixed, and said that he was concerned by an “apparent lack” of ECB action at its monthly meeting today.

The Euro is not fixed. We continue to see very low inflation rates and a threat of deflation. And we need to see growth in the UK, the US and the European markets.

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Talbot continued: “As long as Euro inflation is at 0.5 per cent, that’s not doing us any good, it’s not doing our exports any good, (and) it’s not doing our real debt levels any good.”

He said that the current political rhetoric on tax cuts was concerning given what he saw as ongoing key weaknesses.

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Jack Horgan-Jones

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