Paul Clarke Offers a 10-point Plan to Improve Ireland’s Economy

  1. Introduce a Reduced VAT Rate on Housing Repair, Maintenance and Improvements (RMI). Paul supports the reduction of the VAT to 5% on all Housing Repair, Maintenance and Improvement projects, up to a value of €50,000. This VAT reduction will incentivise job creation and increase the circulation of money through the economy, which ultimately benefits all sectors.
  2. Enable Start-ups to Offset Corporation Tax against Other Taxes Due. Paul supports allowing new companies to offset trading losses against other taxes due during a start-up period to last 5 years. By freeing up cash-flow during the critical early years of a company’s existence, the possibility that the company succeeds and grows to hire more workers and contribute to the overall Irish economy increases significantly.
  3. Halve the level of Capital Gains Tax for Entrepreneurs to 16.5%. Paul supports lowering the tax on Capital Gains in order to encourage entrepreneurship and honor the risks taken by this special class of businessperson. Not only will this reduction allow entrepreneurs to invest more in their business, leading to more Irish jobs, but it will potentially incentivise the sale of these enterprises to companies looking to grow as their owners approach retirement.
  4. Introduce a Targeted Rates Reduction for Businesses in Town Centres. Paul supports lowering the tax burden on businesses located in city and town centres, whose presence in these central locations both provide employment and improve quality of life in these urban areas.
  5. Introduce a Double Rent Deduction for Companies with Upward Only Rent Reviews. Paul supports allowing companies who are currently paying rents that do not correlate with their market value to receive a double rent reduction in their returns. Such a reduction may ease the burden on locally-owned businesses and allow them to improve their financial picture, supporting Ireland’s local and national economy.
  6. Apply an ‘Ireland Rate of Return’ in Tendering Decisions for Public Sector Contracts. Paul supports factoring the “return-on-investment” criteria to Public Sector tendering decisions that are currently being made only upon a “value for money” basis. By considering how Irish companies and workers benefit from Public Sector awards instead of automatically farming these contracts out to large out-of-State firms to spend as little as possible, the Irish economy can experience a significant benefit.
  7. Introduce an Additional Tax Incentive Policy to Encourage Private Sector Investment. Paul supports encouraging private companies to invest in Irish businesses by offering an alternate, reduced tax rate on returns earned through loans to irish companies. By offering such an incentive, Irish businesses could expect to see much greater private investments, allowing these companies to grow and in return grow the Irish economy.
  8. Promote Ireland as the Best Possible Location for Nearshoring. Paul supports promoting Ireland as a premiere location for European companies looking to locate their production, facilities and services in countries closer to home rather than in distant, overseas markets. An inflow of international businesses into Ireland would support the national economy and make productive use of Ireland’s existing infrastructure.
  9. Mandate all Government Research Funding Agencies to set aside 2.5% of their Budget for SMEs. Paul supports requiring government-based Research & Development agencies to reserve 2.5% of their budget for small- and medium-sized enterprises. By preserving access to R&D funding for SMEs, Irish startups with an eye towards innovation will have an opportunity to expand, supporting job growth in an important sector of the Irish economy.
  10. Introduce Further Operational Initiatives to Promote Business Interests. Paul supports other steps to further promote Irish business interests, including reducing regulations on hiring new employees and creating a one-stop website with information for Irish companies to assist in import and export enterprises.


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Paul Clarke, Independent