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Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I begin with the issues raised by Deputy Pearse Doherty. He makes a fair case that we need to be able to use tax policy to respond to trends within the economy. The reason I decided a move to the level for which he advocates was not appropriate was the change I had made to stamp duty on commercial property in the last three budgets. We have moved from a rate of 2% to 7.5%, a threefold...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: If we want to raise taxes in order to provide better public services, somebody will have to pay tax at a higher level. I cannot avoid this. If we are not willing to make the argument for somebody somewhere paying more tax and, in turn, using that money to either improve public services or deal with economic risks, as mentioned by Deputy Pearse Doherty, it will be very difficult to make any...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: It would be a trained farmer. We have a relief in place for the young trained farmer. It will be 40 tomorrow. I have no doubt there will be a future Finance Bill debate on increasing it to 45 and then beyond that. We have an age threshold to ensure it is consistent with state aid requirements. I am absolutely certain that if we were to change that to 40, at some point we would be...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I will consult my officials to see what the policy is or could be on trained farmers. I conclude by making the point that it is difficult to have a young farmer scheme without a definition of age. In response to Deputy Fitzmaurice, of course it would be the one person. As he well knows different State bodies and agencies can have different age thresholds. We have one of 35. It is a...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I will deal with the two subjects that have been raised, namely, the decision I made on the bank levy and whether it should be increased further and the credit union levy. On the banking levy and its status, this is an issue that has been discussed in the debate on each Finance Bill, as has been acknowledged by various speakers. Last August, I published a report on foot of a debate on the...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: We will do some work to evaluate the impact of the increase in stamp duty on the sector and publish it in advance of next year's budget. I make the general point that we have seen this sector go from 2% to 7.5% and it is still going very strong.

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: In general, the purchase of company shares is liable to stamp duty at 1%. When stamp duty was increased from 2% to 6% in budget 2018, an anti-avoidance measure in section 31C was included to ensure the new 6% rate would also apply where non-residential property, held by an entity such as a company, is indirectly sold by way of a sale of shares in the company and, effectively, the company...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I understand the Deputy's argument but I ask him to take account of the magnitude of the change that is included in this Finance Bill, which he has acknowledged throughout the debate. I also ask him, and people who are listening to the debate, to reflect on the words I used a few moments ago when I made clear that we would continue to scrutinise the taxation of various corporate structures...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: Any such transactions that take place in the future will be subject to the regime we are changing here. The measures we are introducing to either bring in new policies or increase compliance with the measures in place constitute a very balanced response to the issues we have debated. These structures can and do play a role in the provision of commercial property and homes here. I also have...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: If the Deputy saw me making a head motion, it was in response to the Deputy's claim that we could apply a minimum effective corporate tax rate to our banks. Neither I nor any Minister for Finance can apply a corporate tax rate that would be selective to one part of our economy. It would have to be applied to all. As I am cognisant of the risks the Deputy has outlined, with which I agree, I...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: The banking sector is already paying a level of tax, which is the corporate tax it pays, although that is reduced by the levels of losses it carries forward. The sector is also paying the banking levy. The report we published a year ago went into many of these various arguments. For example, it went into the issue of the likely effect of this on the share price of these banks. The owner...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I will.

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: Section 60 is about stamp duties and the Deputy raising an issue about credit unions. However, I have heard the argument and will get the information sent on to the Deputy.

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I move amendment No. 110:In page 102, line 21, to delete "or". Amendment No. 112 is the substantive amendment of the group while amendments Nos. 110 and 111 are consequential formatting matters. Amendment No. 112 seeks to correct a drafting oversight in section 62 of the Bill as published. The section provides for the information to be submitted to the Revenue Commissioners in the context...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I move amendment No. 111:In page 102, line 25, after "death falls," to insert "or".

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: I move amendment No. 112:In page 102, between lines 25 and 26, to insert the following:"(c) where neither paragraph (a) nor (b) applied, an individual who had an interest in property situate in the State,".

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: If one compares where we are with this tax and the level of taxation for those who inherit homes or other things, as the Deputy said, the system of taxation we have now for dealing with inheritance is at significantly higher levels versus where we were in the pre-crisis period. It is a change but it is not massive. It is just a change of increment. If one compares where we were only a few...

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: Given that I have done three budgets and that the degree of change in each has been, to use my words carefully, given what the Deputy just said, incremental, I will decide at another point what commitments the party or I should make for the future. Let us be clear that, for the most part, this is about the transfer of inheritance between parents and their children.

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: It is not about ideology for me. Parents work very hard to build and own a home and build up income during their lives. They pass that to their children. The Deputy takes a different view of that than me.

Select Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach: Finance Bill 2019: Committee Stage (Resumed) (6 Nov 2019)

Paschal Donohoe: The Deputy has made a statement and I will respond. Every time I outline a view, it is ideology, but every time the Deputy does so, it is a belief.

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