Budget 2021 - CPA Ireland Response


• € 3.4bn recovery fund welcome but must be easy to access

• End of tax discrimination against self-employed welcomed

Tuesday October 13th 2020 CPA Ireland, has broadly welcomed Budget 2021 which it has said “contains many measures that will assist struggling SMEs'. However, the body, whose members advise over 100,000 Irish SMEs, have said 'it is essential that these new supports are designed to be easily accessed and with a minimum of red tape.

New research conducted in advance of Budget 2021 by Economist Jim Power on behalf of CPA Ireland has shown how important it will be for SMEs to be supported in the months and years ahead. This research found:
  • 96.9% of respondents believe that further initiatives will be required from Government to sustain businesses in the long term.
  • 92% of businesses are either very or moderately concerned about Brexit, with 72% believing that it will affect their business
  • 56% do not intend to change their employment next year with just 19% expecting to increase employment
Commenting on Budget 2021, CPA Ireland President John Devaney said: “We are in the midst of what should be a once in a generation crisis with COVID-19 and yet the spectre of a second, a no deal Brexit, looms large over the Irish economy this month. We welcome the Government’s firm commitment to SME’s announced in today’s budget.

The focus on maintaining viability and supporting cashflow will help provide confidence to the economy. The introduction of new cash payment supports for sectors specifically impacted by COVID-19 restrictions will be particularly welcomed by those businesses. Similarly, the reduction in VAT for the hospitality sector, which has proven to work well in the past will be welcomed by this sector.

Entrepreneurs and the self-employed will welcome the fact that after many years of discrimination their tax credits are now aligned with those of PAYE workers. The intention to provide a similar type scheme to the existing Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme, to run to the end of 2021, will provide reassurance to those who have benefitted from the existing scheme to date.
However fast, a straightforward implementation is essential for these measures to have a positive impact. At the start of the crisis there was an immediate and positive response. However, many difficulties emerged in accessing state supports, particularly by SMEs and unfortunately the Government have been slow to adapt. With this latest round of supports it is essential that SME owners can access them quickly if they are truly to have a positive impact.”