Written answers

Thursday, 4 July 2024

Photo of Aindrias MoynihanAindrias Moynihan (Cork North West, Fianna Fail)
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90. To ask the Minister for Finance for an update on Exchequer returns to date in 2024; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28624/24]

Photo of Aindrias MoynihanAindrias Moynihan (Cork North West, Fianna Fail)
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104. To ask the Minister for Finance if he will report on income tax revenues to date in 2024; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28623/24]

Photo of Jack ChambersJack Chambers (Dublin West, Fianna Fail)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 90 and 104 together.

The latest Exchequer returns show a largely positive picture of the public finances. Overall tax revenues at the end of June amounted to a total of €44.7 billion, that is ahead of last year by 9.3 per cent, and 3.4 per cent ahead of my Department's published profile.

The ongoing resilience of our economy is reflected in income tax and VAT receipts: income tax receipts stand at €16.7 billion at the end of June, above last year by €1.2 billion or 7.5 per cent, while VAT receipts were €11.0 billion, €0.6 billion or 6.2 per cent ahead of the same period last year.

However, the stand-out feature of the June returns was of course the sharp increase in corporation tax, which is now ahead of the same point last year by €1.6 billion or 15.4 per cent. €12.1 billion in corporation tax receipts were collected to the end of June.

Government has warned on numerous occasions about the dangers of “windfall” corporation tax receipts. These receipts are subject to exceptional potential volatility and must not be depended upon to fund permanent spending commitments.

Our approach to budgetary policy has been built upon the assumption that these receipts could prove transient. We have taken steps to address this risk through the establishment of two new long-term funds, the Future Ireland Fund and the Infrastructure, Climate and Nature Fund. These funds will enable us to invest these receipts to prepare for future fiscal challenges and, at the same time, ensure that windfall taxes do not become part of the permanent expenditure base.

Ultimately, the best way to ensure the sustainability and positive trajectory of the public finances over the medium-term horizon is by continuing to pursue a balanced and sensible budgetary policy.

Government will set out the budgetary strategy for Budget 2025 in the upcoming Summer Economic Statement, which will be published in the coming weeks.

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