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Irish SMEs Hope For Reduced Tax Burden In 2016

by Jason Gorringe,, London

21 December 2015

Above all else, Irish small firms are seeking a reduction in the personal tax burden and more support for domestic businesses, according to a new survey by professional services firm PwC.

PwC's latest SME Pulse Survey reflects the views of 62 Irish small firms operating in a range of sectors. 91 percent of participants said they were confident about the prospects for the Irish economy in the year ahead, up from 87 percent in 2014. More than two-thirds intend to invest in their businesses.

PwC said that concerns around increasing tax burdens, exchange rate volatility, and over-regulation have eased over the last year. 62 percent said that an increasing tax burden was a major concern, compared with 84 percent in 2014.

When asked what the Government should prioritize in the year ahead, 58 percent said continued support for SMEs and/or indigenous businesses. 47 percent said it should reduce personal tax and/or widen the tax bands. Both these figures were unchanged from 2014. 25 percent agreed that the Government should continue to promote Ireland as having an efficient, transparent, and competitive tax regime.

John Dunne, Partner, PwC Private Business Services, said: "The survey is good news for the Irish SME sector, many of whom are targeting the export market. While still high, many of the challenges of the past are now beginning to show signs of easing up, such as access to finance, skills, and the overall tax burden. However, as a small open economy heavily dependent on foreign markets, there is no time for complacency and private Irish businesses should continue to keep a close watch on all areas of operation and look to really exploit the benefits that digital technologies have to offer."

TAGS: tax | business | Ireland | tax thresholds | tax rates | tax reform | regulation | individual income tax | services

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