Housing, sugar tax and social welfare: Budget '18 at a glance

Dara Calleary left and Michael Mc Grath outlined Fianna Fáil’s budget priorities yesterday
Dara Calleary left and Michael Mc Grath outlined Fianna Fáil’s budget priorities yesterdayLEAH FARRELL ROLLINGNEWS

11 October, 2017

Budget 2018 has been delivered to the Dail by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe.

Some €1.2 billion in new spending and tax cut was announced this afternoon, in a plan that Minister Donohoe hopes will build on the progress made over the past few years.

The budget will amount to €60.9 billion for 2018.

According to Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, there will "no big bonanza" and "no fireworks" in Budget 2018, however he insisted that it will be a "good budget overall".

A "Rainy Day Fund" is to be established in the next year with € 1.5 billion being transferred from the Ireland Strategic Investment fund to start it off.

From last week of March, €5 per week increase in all weekly social welfare payments, including disability allowance, carer's allowance, Jobseekers' Allowance and State pension.

Tax increases are expected to include cigarettes and sugary drinks.

€13 million increase in the Overseas Development Aid budget.

1,300 additional teaching post in schools for 2018 - reducing the student teacher ratio to 26:1.

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Drinks containing between 5g and 8g of sugar per 100ml will have a reduced tax of 20c per litre.

The Housing Assistance Payment Scheme will increase to €149m.

Reduction in prescription charges for all medical card holders under 70 from €2.50 to €2 per item.

The entry point for single earners to get charged the higher rate of tax will increase from €33,800 to €34,550, a rise of €750.

2018 will also see an extra 800 gardaí being recruited as well as another 500 civilians being hired.

Brexit Loan Scheme for SMEs announced - €300 million will be available to them at competitive rates.

The VAT rate on tourism & services sector WILL NOT change.

The 2.5% rate is being lowered to 2% with the ceiling for this rate raised from €18,772 to €19,372.

USC rate rated from 5% to 4.75%.

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