I am advised by Revenue that information in respect of the annual cost of the Research and Development (R&D) tax credit is available for all years up to 2016 at link, https://www.revenue.ie/en/corporate/information-about-revenue/statistics/tax-expenditures/r-and-d-tax-credits.aspx.
The publication includes information on the cost of payable tax credits for each of these years. Information in respect of 2017 should be available later in 2019.
Where a company has insufficient Corporation Tax against which to claim the R&D tax credit in a given accounting period, the tax credit may be credited against the Corporation Tax for the preceding period, may be carried forward indefinitely or, if the company is a member of a group, allocated to other group members. The R&D credit can also be claimed by the company as a payable credit. Where a company has offset the credit against the Corporation Tax of the current and preceding accounting periods and an excess amount still remains, the company may make a claim to have the amount of that excess paid to it by Revenue in three instalments over a period of 33 months.
It is not possible to accurately predict the yield from eliminating the payable element of the R&D credit. Sums in respect of the credit are generally set off against Corporation Tax in the first instance and are only carried forward as a payable credit where there is insufficient tax liability in a year to absorb the full amount. The future cost of the payable element is therefore dependent on both the profitability of claimant companies as well as their level of qualifying R&D activity.