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'Our citizens need help': Everything you need to know about Budget 2023

The Government has confirmed a range of measures including tax band changes, electricity credits and social welfare increases.

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe speaking the Dáil this afternoon
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe speaking the Dáil this afternoon
Image: Oireachtas TV

Updated Sep 27th 2022, 6:32 PM

BUDGET 2023, CONTAINING measures totalling around €11 billion, has been announced in Dáil Éireann.

The Government has confirmed a range of measures aimed at addressing the cost-of-living crisis including tax band changes, electricity credits and social welfare increases.

Speaking in the Dáil this afternoon, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said: “When we gathered in this chamber for Budget 2022, we were emerging from the very worst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We now face a further economic challenge. If you are an older person, you’re having to spend more of your pension on heating your home. If you’re looking after your family, you are now facing higher grocery bills.

“And if you’re running a small business, you are trying to cope with the increases in the cost of energy.”

During his speech, he noted the impact of the war in Ukraine on the global economy and cost of energy.

“The onset of the war in Ukraine has sent shockwaves throughout the global economy, and this is most evident in energy and commodity markets, where prices surged at the onset of the war and have remained high.

“Energy price inflation intensified over the summer as concerns grew regarding a complete shutdown of Russian gas supplies. The wholesale price of natural gas is now around eight times its average level in the years preceding the war,” Donohoe stated.

Commending the Budget to the House, he added: “We know our citizens need help, we know our employers need help and this Budget aims to give this help.”

You can watch the announcement here:


Click here to watch on Oireachtas.ie. Streams provided by HEAnet.

Speaking next, Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath said: “We know that many are genuinely worried about what lies ahead in the months to come.

“We know too that many of our businesses that survived Covid with the support of the Government are now facing a serious threat in the form of dramatic energy price rises.

“Our experience over the last three years and the manner in which we collectively responded demonstrates our resilience as a nation.

“We continue to navigate the uncertainties of Brexit. We got through the long, dark days of Covid and we are responding with compassion and resolve to the dreadful invasion of Ukraine.

“We’re doing this together, both here in Ireland and in cooperation with our international partners. These are not normal times.

“The war in Ukraine continues to have far-reaching ramifications across so many areas of life as we know it. We have not experienced inflation like this for 14 years.”

image (1) Michael McGrath, Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Source: Oireachtas TV

The key measures announced include:

  • Income Tax Package: The standard rate band is to increase by €3,200 to €40,000 for single people with proportionate increases for married couples and civil partners. This will see the rate rise from €45,800 to €49,000 for married couples in a one-income household. This measure will come into effect in 2023.
  • Personal Tax Credit, Employee Credit and Earned Income Credit all set to increase by €75; this measure will also kick in next year
  • The ceiling of the second USC rate band will be increased from €21,295 to €22,920 to “support those on minimum wage”; coming into effect in 2023

Find out exactly how all of the changes will affect you by using the button below:

  • An increase of €12 per week in social welfare payments from January 2023. The increase will bring the full State pension to €265.30 per week and the maximum personal rate of Jobseeker’s Allowance and Jobseeker’s Benefit with no dependents to €220 per week.
  • A once-off double week Cost of Living Support payment to all qualifying social protection recipients. This will be paid in October and will include pensioners, carers, people on disability payments, and jobseekers.
  • Three domestic universal €200 electricity credits (totalling €600) over the next three billing cycles (once before Christmas and twice early next year) 
  • A new Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme (TBESS) to assist businesses with their energy costs, up to €10,000 per month
  • €2 billion will be added to the National Reserve Fund, and €4 billion in 2023. Donohoe said these contributions effectively mean that we will have ‘banked’ a large share of the additional corporate tax revenues; ensured that they do not fund permanent expenditure, and supplied the Exchequer with “additional firepower to respond to challenges over the coming years”.
  • Vacant Homes Tax to be charged at three times a property’s base Local Property Tax rate. This self-assessed measure will be introduced in 2023 and administered by Revenue. There will be exemptions for properties that were recently sold or are listed for rent; properties that are vacant due to the owner’s illness or them being in long-term care; and properties that are vacant as a result of “significant refurbishment work”. 
  • An extension of the Help-to-Buy scheme in its current enhanced form for a further two years – until 31 December 2024
  • A new tax credit of €500 for tenants who are paying rent in respect of their principal private residence; it will apply for 2023 and subsequent years up to 2025, but can also be claimed in respect of 2022
  • Funding for 37,000 homes energy upgrades
  • An extension to the current temporary reduction in the excise duty on fuel; this reduction will now remain in place until 28 February 2023
  • An extension of the temporary reduction in the rate of VAT from 13.5% to 9% on the supply of gas and electricity; these reductions will remain in place until 28 February 2023
  • The carbon tax increase will go ahead from 12 October – adding just over two cents per litre to petrol and diesel, but the Government is proposing to offset this increase with a reduction to zero of the National Oil Reserves Agency levy
  • A €400 lump sum payment for Fuel Allowance recipients to be paid before Christmas
  • A 25% reduction in weekly childcare fees from January 2023 onwards, worth up to €175 per month or €2,106 per year
  • Extending the provision of free GP care to more than 400,000 people with implementation of the commitment to extend to six and seven-year-olds in Q4 2022, as well as extension to those on or below the median income
  • Removing hospital inpatient charges for all public patients, building on a measure that was first introduced in last year’s Budget that removed these charges for children under 16
  • Cariban, a drug that helps severe pregnancy sickness, to be given free of charge
  • Expansion of free contraception, currently available to women aged 17 to 25, to those aged from 16 to 30 next year
  • A once-off €1,000 reduction in student contribution for eligible students; a once-off double monthly payment of the Susi maintenance grant; 10-14% increase in Susi grant
  • Free School Books Scheme for primary school pupils from September 2023
  • Funding for over 1,190 SNAs and 680 Special Education teachers
  • A once-off payment of €500 for people living with disabilities, and €500 for those eligible for the Carer’s Support Grant
  • The tax-free bonus amount an employer can give an employee will increase from €500 to €1,000 annually
  • An increase in the Home Carer Tax Credit from €1,600 to €1,700
  • The introduction of a 10% Concrete Products Levy to contribute towards the cost of the Defective Concrete Blocks Redress Scheme
  • Excise on a pack of 20 cigarettes to increase by 50 cent, with a pro rata increase on other tobacco products
  • The VAT rate on newspapers will be reduced from 9% to zero from 1 January 2023
  • The VAT rate on defibrillators will be reduced from 23% to zero
  • HRT and nicotine replacement products will also become VAT-free
  • €12 billion in funding for “vital infrastructure” under the National Development Fund
  • €390 million investment in the development of rural Ireland
  • Funding for 1,000 additional recruits to An Garda Síochána and funding of €67 million for the implementation of the Commission on Defence Forces recommendations
  • €500 million to “strengthen sustainability” of Agriculture sector
  • The extension of five agricultural tax reliefs due to expire this year. The following three schemes will be extended until 31 December 2024: Young Trained Farmer Stamp Duty Relief; Farm Consolidation Stamp Duty Relief; Farm Restructuring Capital Gains Tax Relief; the following two schemes will be extended until 31 December 2025: Young Trained Farmer Stock Relief; Registered Farm Partnership Stock Relief. 
  • €75 million to provide humanitarian support within Ukraine and its neighbours
  • €1.1 billion to support the Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and Media sectors
  • €100 million in funding for major cross-border infrastructure projects

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Órla Ryan

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