|Ibec CEO Danny McCoy with Ibec President Anne Heraty|
This update provides a comprehensive analysis of how today's budget will impact your business.
Budget 2017 includes a range of positive measures that will support growth, but the scale of the Brexit challenge is under appreciated. A series of additional reforms and initiatives will be required this year.
Tax reforms don't go nearly far enough towards levelling the playing field with the UK. Businesses exposed to the deepening currency crisis require additional support. An urgent, cross-departmental response, coordinated by the Taoiseach, is now needed and must involve the re-prioritisation of current resources and new spending.
The attractiveness of Ireland as a place to live and work remains an abiding concern for many business. Moves to increase education spending, boost the housing supply and make childcare more affordable are welcome. But these measures need to be closely monitored and quickly adjusted if they are not having the desired effect.
Changes to the taxation of entrepreneurs are welcome, if modest. The capital gains tax reforms and changes to the personal tax regime for the self-employed are sensible and send out the right message about the need to better support entrepreneurship.
Some additional capital spending was announced, but EU fiscal constraints mean that the resources allocated fall far short of what is needed. This remains one of the biggest economic challenges facing the country. Work at an EU level to secure more spending flexibility must remain at the very top of the political agenda.
These are uncertain times for many companies. Ibec will remain focused on representing the views of business over the coming weeks and months. I'll keep you updated.