A holistic approach is needed when looking at the Report of the Commission on Taxation and Welfare. Chambers Ireland calls for everyone to take a measured response to the Report of the Commission on Taxation and Welfare following the publication of “Foundations of the Future”.
Speaking after the publication of the report, Chambers Ireland Chief Executive, Ian Talbot, said: “Foundations of the Future is a weighty piece of work, in terms of both the effort that went into it, and, at almost 550 pages, the sheer volume of it.
“The task of the Commission was enormous: To take a strategic look at the challenges ahead of us, which include our greying population, climate change and climate mitigation efforts, and financing the decarbonisation our society, while ensuring Ireland remains a growth friendly place to grow a business.
“When viewed in their totality, the implementation of these proposals would mean a fundamental transformation of our taxation system lets us address the challenges of this century.
“It is critical for business that we have a national taxation and welfare plan that credibly leads us towards a fiscally sustainable future. Only if such a plan is credible will it offer businesspeople the certainty needed to take risks in a volatile world.
“Everyone should look at the report as a package of proposed reforms and avoid ‘reverse cherry-picking’ – the active seeking of measures to be unhappy about – we must evaluate the proposals in the round.
“Ireland faces major fiscal sustainability challenges. Reform is needed if we are to overcome those challenges. It is not in the national interest to pretend we can take an à la carte approach to reforms because the fiscal hole will keep growing until we act.”
Chambers Ireland’s Head of Policy, Shane Conneely continued: “Ireland has experienced enormous economic volatility over the first two decades of this century, and there is little to suggest that we are about to enter a long, boring period of stability.
“Robust finances which can withstand the rigours of an increasingly shock-prone world are needed if we are to have a resilient economy that can take advantage of the changes before us.
“With so much uncertainty ahead, government needs to deliver a package of reforms that allows the domestic economy to thrive even as the revenue derived from other traditional sources wax and wane.
“Everyone can find something in this set of measures that will make them unhappy, so from that perspective at least, they are balanced set of proposals.
“But reform is needed, the Irish taxation base is far too concentrated. This makes us extremely vulnerable to changes in the international business environment. Our tax base needs to be broadened, which requires reforms that allow our domestic economy to thrive. A large, growing domestic sector is key to ensuring that there is a counterweight to our fiscal dependence on FDI.”