Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (209)

Ruth Coppinger


209. Deputy Ruth Coppinger asked the Minister for Finance if he will remove VAT from silicone menstruation cups and other reusable products; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13438/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

VAT is guided by the EU VAT Directive, with which Irish VAT law must comply. In Ireland, certain sanitary products, such as sanitary towels and tampons, are charged to VAT at the zero rate.

Article 110 of the VAT Directive allows Member States to apply a zero rate of VAT to goods or services that are social in nature, that benefit the final consumer and which applied at a zero rate on and from I January 1991. Sanitary items like sanitary towels were applied at the zero rate since 1975, while sanitary tampons have applied at the zero rate since 1984.

As both applied at the zero rate since before 1991, it is possible to retain the zero rated VAT treatment on these products. However, it is not possible to apply the zero rate to other newer sanitary products that were not zero-rated on 1 January 1991.