Tuesday, 17 September 2019
Department of Finance
126. To ask the Minister for Finance if organisations engaged in hunting will be removed from tax exemption under section 235 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 which relates to sports and games organisations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37205/19]
Section 235 Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 provides an exemption from income tax or corporation tax, as appropriate, for bodies which are established and existing for the sole purpose of promoting:
- an athletic game or an athletic sport, or
- an amateur game or an amateur sport.
The exemption applies to that portion of the income of the “approved body” which has been or will be applied to the purpose of promoting an athletic or amateur game or sport.
As the legislation does not define what is meant by the term “sport”, it is given its ordinary meaning, which includes pastimes collectively undertaken for recreation purposes, provided such activities are legal and considered by convention and custom to be sporting activities. These include field sports such as hunting. Bodies engaged in the promotion of such activities are entitled to a tax exemption under the legislation provided they meet all the other relevant criteria.
My Department's Tax Expenditure Guidelines provide that tax expenditures such as this should be reviewed on a regular basis. The measure mentioned by the Deputy will be reviewed in the normal course of events and all relevant considerations and views will be taken into account as part of that process.