Local Publican concerned for future of industry once 9% VAT rate ends

Photo supplied by Paddy's Bar, Terryglass

The decision to extend the 9% VAT rate for the hospitality sector to next August doesn’t go far enough according to a local publican.

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe announced in this week’s budget that the rate would return to 13.5% in September of 2022.

Those in the hospitality sector had wanted it to be extended for longer to allow them recover from the impact of Covid restrictions on the industry.

Mairead Ryan from Paddy’s Bar in Terryglass says it was a big disappointment and has left her questioning the viability of her business.

“We have suffered for the last 18 months in every aspect. We’ve suffered with rising costs, we’ve suffered with a staff exodus and what we need now is a long term plan – a five year plan – for this industry to get back on its feet.

“If we knew that our VAT rate was staying at 9% – which is commonplace all over Europe – we would be able to make plans for that.

“I’m worried now about the industry going forward and particularly my own business as to whether we’ll survive it or not.”