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Budget 2023: What measures have already kicked in?

Some measures included in the €11 billion budget have already been enacted.

Image: Shutterstock/symbiot

MEASURES COSTING AROUND €11 billion were announced in yesterday’s budget and some of the measures will kick in immediately.

So what changes can you expect to see today following Budget 2023?

VAT and excise reductions

In March, the government announced an excise reduction on petrol, diesel, and marked gas oil.

Speaking at the time, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe noted that while “the government has limited resources” and that “we cannot cushion citizens and businesses from the entire impact”.

This excise reduction was due to end in August, but was then extended to October, and was further extended in yesterday’s budget.

Announcing the move yesterday, Minister Donohoe said the current extension will last until 28 February, 2023.

The current excise reduction equates to 21 cent per litre of petrol, 16 cent per litre of diesel, and 5.4 cent per litre of Marked Gas Oil.

It was also announced in April of this year that the VAT rate on gas and electricity bills had been cut from 13.5% to 9%.

This reduction, which was due to expire at the end of October, has also been extended to 28 February, 2023.

Cost of cigarettes

There will be an immediate increase in the cost of cigarettes.

An increase in excuse duty will push the cost of a pack of cigarettes up by 50 cents, to €15.50.

There will also be a pro-rata increase on other tobacco products.

Minister Donohoe said this was being implemented to “support public health policy to reduce smoking in Irish society”.

Small Benefit Exemption

The ‘Small Benefit Exemption’ allows an employer to provide limited non-cash benefits or rewards to employees without the payment of income tax, PRSI and USC.

The annual limit was previously €500 but was doubled yesterday to €1,000.

Employers will also be able to permit two vouchers in a single year under this exemption.

Speaking yesterday, Minister Donohoe said: “I propose that these changes will apply in the current tax year, so that additional benefits can be paid this year if an employer wishes to do so.” 

Night time economy

Speaking in the Dáil yesterday, Minister Donohoe said “the government is committed to supporting the night time economy”.

He said this is not just limited to the hospitality sector, “but also the many musicians, venues, event operators and organisers who are integral to creating a vibrant cultural life”.

In line with a commitment to “modernise licensing laws”, Minister Donohoe announced that the cost of applying for a Special Exemption Order is to be halved, from €110 to €55.

Late night venues require this Special Exemption in order to open.

A Financial Resolution was brought in last night to enact this measure.

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