Today PwC, in conjunction with the DCU National Centre for Family Business and the Family Business Network, launches its 'Pre-Budget Submission for the Irish SME Sector' setting out key tax initiatives to support "home-grown" Irish businesses. With close to 900,000 people on Government income support, the sharp impact of COVID-19 on jobs has been most severely felt in the Irish SME sector. These proposals, which have already been submitted to Government ahead of the expected July Stimulus, set out new and creative measures targeting four main policy objectives where tax policy can make the most impact: to stimulate demand and protect jobs, to maintain cash circulation within the domestic economy, to help achieve the current national health priorities such as remote working and to support businesses in adapting to the new digital economy which has emerged with the advent of the crisis.
Ronan Furlong Tax Partner at PwC Entrepreneurial and Private Business practice, speaking about the report, said "We welcome the new Government's focus on supporting and prioritising the Irish SME sector. We would urge it to continue to show imagination and consider a range of practical and achievable measures that can help to stimulate demand, protect employment and restart growth in our domestic economy."
"Although Irish businesses have shown themselves to be incredibly resilient and adaptable so far, they will need more support to survive the next phase of the crises. Our economy needs jobs and growth and the suite of actionable tax policy measures we are proposing are aimed at stimulating demand, protecting jobs, helping companies adapt to the digital economy and incentivising companies and their employees to support our National Health priorities."
Key measures in PwC's Pre-Budget Submission for the Irish SME Sector include:
Colm O'Callaghan Tax Partner at PwC Entrepreneurial and Private Business Practice said, "The loss of hundreds of jobs in the SME sector requires creative and heretofore unimagined responses to help restore and maintain this vital sector of the Irish economy. While the recent announcement of forbearance measures related to the payment of taxes have been of great assistance in preserving cash, it is cash injections that so many SMEs currently need. We therefore recommend the introduction of a 'borrow back tax paid' scheme, as has been successful in other countries like Denmark."
Nicola Quinn Tax Partner at PwC Cork concluded, "The situation is so serious and the threats so large, that some very decisive measures need to be taken to help Ireland's SME sector. We have identified a suite of measures, including for sectors badly hit such as hospitality, tourism, retail and motor, along with various accelerated tax deductions aimed at preserving cash, encouraging investment and injecting demand which should ultimately save and create jobs."
Spokespeople are available for an interview regarding this submission; please contact Johanna Dehaene.
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