Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Questions (154)

Jackie Cahill


154. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Finance if the full consequences have been considered in the proposal to apply VAT or to increase the rate on products such as lutein and MacuShield which are recommended by doctors and consultants following surgery for macular degeneration (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5119/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

Under the VAT Consolidation Act, the standard rate of VAT applies to all food supplements, which are not foods in the ordinary and everyday meaning of the word. However, a longstanding concession provided through Revenue guidance permitted the zero rating of certain types of food supplements (vitamins, minerals and fish oils). Revenue published new guidance on 27 December 2018 concerning the rate of VAT that applies to food supplements. The new guidance withdraws the concessionary application of the zero rate to certain food supplements provided for in previous guidance and these products will be liable at the standard rate from 1 March 2019. Food supplement products that did not fall within the withdrawn concession were already liable at the standard rate and this remains unchanged.

Human oral medicines and other health products, including folic acid and vitamin products, that are licensed by the Health Products Regulatory Agency (HPRA) are liable at the zero rate.