Civil Defence

Questions (41)

Jack Chambers

Question:

41. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the policy for equipment disposal within the Civil Defence; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40213/19]

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Written answers (Question to Defence)

Civil Defence policy is set by me as Minister with Responsibility for Defence through the Civil Defence Branch of my Department. Civil Defence services are administered by Civil Defence Officers who are Local Authority employees.

One of the roles of my Department is to provide up to a maximum of 70% grant aid towards the cost of providing Civil Defence services in each Local Authority. The funding contributes towards the cost of employing a Civil Defence Officer as well as procuring Civil Defence equipment such as vehicles, boats and first aid equipment. My Department also centrally procures equipment including Vehicles, Drones, Uniforms and Personal Protective Equipment.

Local Authorities have responsibility for the day to day operation of Civil Defence within their respective areas. In that context, most Civil Defence assets, for example Vehicles, boats, and drones are held in individual Local Authorities. 

The policy in relation to equipment disposal is as follows;  

In the case of Civil Defence vehicles no longer required, they are disposed of either through

(a) a local authority or Department of Defence arranged disposal auction, or 

(b) by way of part exchange through a registered Motor Dealer.

Where the vehicle is no longer roadworthy, it must be scrapped through an authorized scrappage treatment facility.

In the case of boats, local authorities notify my Department if a boat is considered to be beyond further use. My Department then makes appropriate arrangements for de-commissioning and appropriate disposal of the boat and any ancillary equipment.

The situation in relation to uniforms and personal protective equipment is currently being considered by my officials.

Ministerial Transport

Questions (42)

Niall Collins

Question:

42. Deputy Niall Collins asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of times the Government jet has landed and taken off from each airport here since 2011 to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40234/19]

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Written answers (Question to Defence)

I take it the Deputy is referring to the use of the Government Jet for the Ministerial Air Transport Service. Information in relation to Ministerial Air Transport is available publically via a link entitled Ministerial Air Transport Service (MATS) on the Department of Defence homepage at www.defence.ie. This information is updated on a monthly basis.

Separately, the Deputy might note that, apart from MATS flights, operational outputs of the Government Jet can also include Aid to Civil Authority or Aid to the Civil Power tasks. The Air Corps also conducts training using the Government Jet. The Deputy will appreciate that, for security reasons, it would not be appropriate to itemise the details of these flights.

Defence Forces Strength

Questions (43, 45)

Jack Chambers

Question:

43. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the strength of the Permanent Defence Forces; the breakdown by rank across the three services; the gender breakdown of same in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40474/19]

View answer

Jack Chambers

Question:

45. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of additional recruits the Permanent Defence Forces have taken on to date in 2019 with regard to all three services; the gender breakdown of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40476/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Defence)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 43 and 45 together.

The following table illustrates the strength of the Permanent Defence Force, by service and by gender, and the number of new recruits, in total and by gender, as at 31st August 2019: -

 Branch

 Army

 Air Corps

 Naval Service

 Total

 Strength (WTE)

 6,979

 705

 969

8,653 

 Strength female

 482

 31

 66

579 

Recruits inducted

 184

n/a 

 76

 260

Females inducted

 11

n/a 

 2

 13

 

While inductions take place at various stages throughout the year, there is normally an accelerated intake of personnel in the last quarter. The Defence Forces continues to implement its recruitment plan throughout 2019, targeting General Service Recruits, Cadets and specialists for the Army, Air Corps and Naval Service.

Defence Forces Reserve Strength

Question No. 45 answered with Question No. 43.

Questions (44)

Jack Chambers

Question:

44. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the strength of the Reserve Defence Forces with regard to all three services and all ranks; the gender breakdown of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40475/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Defence)

The Reserve Defence Force (RDF) is comprised of the First Line Reserve, the Army Reserve (AR) and the Naval Service Reserve (NSR).  The Government appreciates the service of the Reserve Defence Force and recognises its importance in contributing to Ireland's defence capability.  The White Paper on Defence is clear that there is a continued requirement to retain and develop the RDF and it is currently on a development oath arising from recommendations of the White Paper. 

The strength of the Reserve Defence Force, as of 31 August 2019, is set out in the following table:

Service 

 Total Effective Personnel

Total Females 

 Army Reserve

 1550

199 

 Naval Reserve

 148

22 

 First Line Reserve

 297

Not available 

 

In order to facilitate the voluntary nature of reserve service and to maximise attendance of Army Reserve (AR) and Naval Service Reserve (NSR) personnel, training continues to be organised both in and out of normal working hours, at weekends and during academic and traditional holiday periods.

Within the budget of €2.15m allocated to the Reserve, seven days annual paid training is provided for in respect of each effective member of the AR and NSR.  The budget also provides for fourteen days paid training for all additional personnel recruited to the AR and NSR in 2019 along with career and specialist courses for selected members of the Reserve in line with Reserve priorities. This provision is sufficient having regard to the existing strength of the RDF and the voluntary nature of Reserve training.

I am satisfied that members of the Amy Reserve and Naval Service Reserve are afforded the opportunity to avail of training and update their skills on an ongoing basis.

Question No. 45 answered with Question No. 43.

Defence Forces Reserve Strength

Questions (46)

Jack Chambers

Question:

46. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of additional recruits the Reserve Defence Forces have taken on to date in 2019 with regard to all services; the gender breakdown of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40477/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Defence)

I mam advised by the military authorities that as of 31 August 2019, 88 new members have been inducted into the Reserve Defence Force (RDF), broken down as follows:

 -

 Total number inducted

 Number of females inducted

Army Reserve 

 71

 5

Naval Service Reserve

 17

 2

The Government remains committed to on-going recruitment in the RDF. There is currently a competition open to the public for both the Army Reserve (AR) and Naval Service Reserve (NSR). The competition will remain open to applicants until midnight on 20 October 2019.

Defence Forces Operations

Questions (47)

Jack Chambers

Question:

47. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of suspect devices that the Army disposal unit has dealt with to date in 2019, by county, in tabular form. [40478/19]

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Written answers (Question to Defence)

The Department of Justice and Equality and An Garda Síochána have primary responsibility for the internal security of the State. Among the roles assigned to the Defence Forces in the White Paper on Defence is the provision of Aid to the Civil Power which, in practice, means to assist An Garda Síochána when requested to do so.

The Defence Forces Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) teams respond when a request for assistance is made by An Garda Síochána in dealing with a suspect device. The number of EOD callouts, which include viable devices, hoaxes, false alarms, post-blast analysis and the removal of unstable chemicals in laboratories dealt with up to the 1st of October 2019, by county, are set out in the following tabular statement:

 COUNTY

Number of Callout to Suspect Devices

CAVAN

 1

CLARE

 3

CORK

 5

DONEGAL

 1

DUBLIN

 25

GALWAY

 3

KERRY

 2

KILDARE

 2

KILKENNY

 1

LIMERICK

 2

LAOIS

 3

LONGFORD

 1

LOUTH

 6

MAYO

 3

MEATH

 1

OFFALY

 1

ROSCOMMON

 4

TIPPERARY

 1

WATERFORD

 1

WESTMEATH

 2

WICKLOW

 6

TOTAL

 74

Naval Service Data

Questions (48)

Jack Chambers

Question:

48. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of days spent at sea by members of the Naval Service Reserve to date in 2019. [40479/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Defence)

I am informed by the military authorities that members of the Naval Service Reserve have completed 93 days at sea to-date in 2019.

Departmental Communications

Questions (49)

Jack Chambers

Question:

49. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if travel advice or a travel warning was issued to Irish citizens for a part of Spain which has been devastated by severe flooding (details supplied); if his attention has been drawn to the requirement for such advice or warning in order for persons that had to cancel travel plans to affected areas to recoup refunds or for cancelled travel to be covered by insurance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40217/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Foreign)

My Department regularly updates its travel advice for over 200 countries. We endeavour to provide up-to-date information to help citizens make informed decisions when they are planning a trip overseas and to offer an objective assessment of the risks they could face.

Our Embassy in Madrid posted a message on Twitter on 13 September, advising that a number of roads in the Murcia and Valencia regions were closed due to heavy rain and storms. The message advised citizens to follow the advice of local authorities, who were urging people not to drive unless strictly necessary, and provided a link to information on further weather warnings. 

The travel advice was reviewed and, on 16 September, the Department's website was updated to note that parts of Spain had been affected by flooding and heavy rains, in particular Valencia, Alicante, Murcia and parts of the Balearic Islands, and that citizens in those areas should exercise caution and follow the advice of local authorities. The advice advised citizens to look at Spain’s State Meteorological Agency, AEMET, for any further information.

Consumer Protection

Questions (50, 66, 68)

Michael McGrath

Question:

50. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if dual pricing by the insurance industry is permitted under consumer protection legislation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40458/19]

View answer

Michael McGrath

Question:

66. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance his views on dual pricing in the insurance industry by which new customers are priced differently to existing customers; the number of insurance companies that undertake this practice; if such a practice is prohibited in other jurisdictions; if his Department or the Central Bank has undertaken a review of the dual pricing system; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40455/19]

View answer

Michael McGrath

Question:

68. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if dual pricing by the insurance industry is consistent with the consumer protection code; if he has considered asking the Central Bank to review the practice; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40457/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 50, 66 and 68 together.

The Central Bank has responsibility for consumer protection in the industry insurance under consumer protection legislation of general application in the form of the Consumer Protection Act 2007 and the Regulations that give effect to the Directive on unfair terms in consumer contracts as well as under provisions specific to regulated financial services providers such as the Central Bank's Consumer Protection Code. Any review of dual pricing by the insurance industry would accordingly be for the Central Bank to undertake and questions about such a review should be addressed to the Minister for Finance.

Banking Sector Data

Questions (51)

Ruth Coppinger

Question:

51. Deputy Ruth Coppinger asked the Minister for Finance if he has met with senior executives of a bank (details supplied) recently; if he has meetings scheduled; if he has raised the issue of job losses with the bank; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40190/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I met with Sir Howard Davies, Chair of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), and Ms. Jane Howard, Chief Executive of its subsidiary, Ulster Bank on 18th July last.  This meeting was in line with the regular meetings that I have with the Chairs and Chief Executives of the retail banks operating in Ireland.

Similarly to other meetings with retail banks, the meeting involved a general discussion of the overall banking sector and matters related to the specific institution.  The issues discussed in this meeting included:

- An update on RBS’s business strategy;

- An update on Ulster Bank’s business strategy and how it is working to provide the benefits of greater competition to Irish consumers;

- The future retail banking landscape, for which I set out the Government’s objectives of greater competition and a more customer-centred focus; and

- Ongoing Brexit-related developments and the impact of uncertainty on investment decisions in the UK. 

There was no discussion of potential job losses, which are commercial decisions for banks and their boards.

At this time, I do not have a future meeting scheduled with the bank but as I have already stated, I would expect to meet them again as part of my regular meetings with all of the retail banks operating in Ireland.

Tax Code

Questions (52)

Michael McGrath

Question:

52. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if a distinction is made across the various enterprise tax schemes such as EIIS, KEEP, and CGT entrepreneur relief for high risk and high potential innovation start-ups as opposed to more traditional asset backed enterprises; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40210/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

The tax system contains a number of measures designed to assist businesses at various stages, including business start-up reliefs, entrepreneur reliefs and incentives to assist businesses to undertake research and development activities.  Summary details of some of the main measures are set out below, and further information is available on the Revenue website at www.revenue.ie.

CGT Entrepreneur Relief

Section 597AA of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 provides for a revised relief for entrepreneurs disposing of certain business assets, the Revised Capital Gains Tax Entrepreneur Relief. This relief provides for a rate of 10 per cent to be applied (since 1 January 2017) to chargeable gains arising on the disposal, by an individual, of qualifying business assets up to a lifetime limit of €1 million.  

The relief is available on the disposal of a wide range of qualifying businesses including high risk and potential innovation start-ups. It does not however make a distinction between start-ups and more traditional asset backed enterprises.  

Research and development tax credit

The R&D Tax Credit provides a 25% tax credit for all qualifying R&D expenditure. Where a company has already offset the credit against current and previous year CT claims, it may apply for a refundable credit in three instalments.  The credit is available to all companies carrying out qualifying research & development activities.

The refundable nature of the R&D tax credit can be particularly attractive to start-up companies in the early stages of trading as the credit can effectively part-fund the R&D activity and act as a valuable source of cash-flow.

Deputies will be aware that I committed during debates on Finance Bill 2018 to consider amendments to the R&D tax credit to encourage uptake of the R&D credit by smaller companies, and this work is nearing completion.  

Knowledge Development Box

The Knowledge Development Box (KDB) that profits from certain qualifying assets that are earned by a company, chargeable to corporation tax in Ireland, can be taxed at 6.25%. This only applies to the extent that the assets relate to Research and Development undertaken by the company.  

The main purpose of the KDB is to encourage companies to develop certain types of intellectual property in Ireland and thereby engage in substantive operations that have a high value add for the Irish economy.  

The KDB (Certificate of Innovations) Act 2017 allows smaller companies to avail of the KDB by allowing SMEs to claim for assets which are “patentable but not yet patented”, and reintroduced substantive patent examination through the Irish Patents Office to ensure that Irish Patents can qualify for the KDB. This is available to companies with annual income from intellectual property that is less than €7.5m and annual global turnover of €50m. However, the relief does not make a further distinction between SMEs and high-innovation start-ups, as referenced in the Deputy’s question.

NAMA Property Construction

Questions (53)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

53. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Finance if a land locked site (details supplied) will be examined by NAMA with a view to enabling the necessary details and procedures to be progressed in order to facilitate housing development; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40241/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

The Deputy will be aware that I, as Minister for Finance, have no role in respect of NAMA’s operations and decisions, or in properties securing its loans.

However, in this instance, I am advised by NAMA that it has never had involvement with the referenced site.

VAT Rate Application

Questions (54)

Seán Fleming

Question:

54. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Finance his views on the restoration of the VAT rate to 9% to improve competitiveness in view of the fact this is the highest rate of VAT on tourist accommodation in the E.U; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40251/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

As the Deputy will be aware, it is a long-standing practice of the Minister for Finance not to comment, in advance of the Budget, on any tax matters that might be the subject of Budget decisions.

VAT Exemptions

Questions (55)

Seán Fleming

Question:

55. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Finance his plans to ensure that the zero VAT rate on food supplements which is in the Irish legislation will continue; if the concession introduced in recent times not to have 23% VAT rate for food supplements be withdrawn in view of the fact that there was never a 23% VAT rate based on a freedom of information e-mail prepared by the VAT interpretation branch, indirect taxes division for the Revenue Commissioners (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40279/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

As the Deputy will be aware, it is a long-standing practice of the Minister for Finance not to comment, in advance of the Budget, on any tax matters that might be the subject of Budget decisions.

Central Bank of Ireland Enforcement Actions

Questions (56)

Michael McGrath

Question:

56. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance the number of instances in each year since 2013 in which the Central Bank brought summary prosecutions against entities or persons operating here without Central Bank authorisation; the number of those that ended in conviction; the fines and penalties imposed by the courts in each conviction; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40287/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

Following the introduction of the Central Bank (Supervision and Enforcement) Act 2013 (the ‘2013 Act’), the Central Bank was provided with a range of enforcement tools to deal with the unauthorised provision of financial products or services (i.e. by an unauthorised entity).  

These tools include the power to publish warning notices in respect of all types of unauthorised activity and to bring an application for an Enforcement Order to the High Court against the unauthorised entity. Both of these tools are extremely effective in their own right and have been utilised successfully by the Central Bank to deal with unauthorised activity. As such, since 2013 the Central Bank has used its enforcement powers under section 53 of the 2013 Act with 166 warning notices published and listed on the Central Bank’s list of unauthorised firms. In addition, in one instance the Central Bank used its enforcement powers under section 52 of the 2013 Act and obtained a High Court Enforcement Order against an unauthorised entity.  

I am informed that the Central Bank keeps the consideration of potential criminality by unauthorised entities under constant review. The Central Bank regularly reports to An Garda Siochana information that leads it to suspect that a criminal offence has been committed, in accordance with its statutory reporting obligations.  

I am informed that the Central Bank has found the enforcement tools provided in the 2013 Act to be very effective for dealing with unauthorised entities and as such, the Bank has not brought a summary prosecution against an unauthorised entity in that time. However, in an appropriate case, the Central Bank will consider the utilisation of its summary prosecution powers.

Credit Unions

Questions (57)

Michael McGrath

Question:

57. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if credit unions will be permitted to hold existing deposits and investments with non-EEA UK institutions in a no-deal Brexit scenario; if so, the contingencies put in place for credit unions in this position; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40301/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

The Central Bank has advised that the regulatory requirements for credit union investments are outlined in Part 5 of the Credit Union Act 1997 (Regulatory Requirement) Regulations 2016 (2016 Regulations). The 2016 Regulations list the permitted classes of investments for credit unions which includes certain investments with credit institutions where ‘credit institution’ means a person authorised as such under the EU Capital Requirements Directive (CRD IV). Under the 2016 Regulations, credit unions may therefore hold investments in UK credit institutions. However, the 2016 Regulations require that a credit union ensures that any investments made remain in compliance. Post-Brexit, the UK will become a third country (non-EU) for the purposes of the CRD IV. Investments made by credit unions in some UK credit institutions may therefore no longer come within a permitted class of investment under the 2016 Regulations in the event of a no-deal Brexit.  

The Central Bank’s supervisory expectations with regard to Brexit planning is that credit unions regularly monitor and report any potential Brexit associated risks they identify, and record these in their risk registers. Credit unions should consider the risks Brexit may pose to their credit union and in particular what risk mitigants may be appropriate for their own business model and common bond.

The Central Bank is in the process of assessing the potential non-compliance by credit unions with the 2016 Regulations in respect of investments in UK credit institutions in the event of a no-deal Brexit and whether any actions are required to address this potential issue. The Central Bank will communicate with credit unions in this regard, as necessary.

Electric Vehicle Grants

Questions (58)

Michael McGrath

Question:

58. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance the estimated full year cost of a 100% tax rebate or grant for the purchase of e-bikes (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40302/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

Revenue estimate that expenditure on bicycles is approximately €62 million per annum including VAT. A breakdown between manual and electric is not available. Therefore the full year cost of grants covering all bicycles would be approximately €62 million. At the current rate of VAT at 23%, this would mean a grant equivalent to a 100% VAT rebate would cost approximately €11.7 million. Neither figure factors-in changes to purchasing patterns.

Brexit Data

Questions (59)

Michael McGrath

Question:

59. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance the number of businesses that have applied for the key customs registration, the economic operators registration and identification number; the number of Irish businesses with such a registration now; the turnaround time for the Revenue Commissioners to process a registration application; the number of Irish businesses the Revenue Commissioners estimate will require such a registration in the course of their normal business after 31 October 2019 in the event of a disorderly Brexit; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40391/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am advised by Revenue that in 2019 to date there have been 18,563 EORI registrations. Details of annual EORI registrations since 2009 are available in the following Table 1. There has been a significant increase in registrations since the start of the latest phase of Revenue’s Trader Engagement Programme which commenced in July of this year. Almost 5,000 businesses registered in August 2019 with an additional 5,767 in September. This brings the overall total of EORI registrations to 58,608.

Through analysis of VAT Information Exchanges system (VIES) returns, Revenue have identified some 102,000 businesses that traded with the UK in 2018 and the first half of 2019. Each of these businesses has been written to and was provided with suggestions regarding practical preparatory steps to take based on their trade pattern with the U.K. Additional follow up telephone contact is being made with businesses, approximately 44,000, that have the largest volumes of trade with the UK (greater than €5,000) and those that trade most frequently with the UK (at least quarterly). This additional engagement work by Revenue will be completed on 4 October.

90% by value of the import trade with the UK in 2018 was carried out by businesses who now have an EORI number. 97% by value of the export trade was carried out by businesses who now have an EORI number. This indicates that businesses that are going to be significantly impacted by Brexit are responding to the call to be prepared.

Revenue have advised me that registering for an EORI number is a simple process and once a business is registered with the Revenue Online Service (ROS) the turnaround registration for an EORI number is approximately 3 minutes.

I commend  Revenue on the intensified Brexit engagement with businesses and I strongly urge all businesses that have received a Brexit preparedness letter from Revenue to take note of its advice to register for an EORI number and ensure that they or their agent have the facility and capacity to lodge a Customs Declaration by 31 October.  

Table 1   EORI REGISTRATIONS

YEAR

YEAR TOTAL

2009-2015

31,573

2016

2,902

2017

2,594

2018

2,976

2019 (to date)

18,563

TOTAL

58,608

Tax Yield

Questions (60, 61)

Michael McGrath

Question:

60. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance the amount of corporation tax collected in each year since 2010; the percentage of total tax take accounted for by corporation tax receipts in each year since 2010, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40392/19]

View answer

Michael McGrath

Question:

61. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance his plans to review the sustainability of corporation tax receipts; his plans to reduce the dependence of Ireland on corporation tax receipts; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40393/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 60 and 61 together.

The information that the Deputy has requested in respect of corporation tax receipts and their percentage of the total tax date, since 2010, is provided below in tabular form.

Year

CT (€ millions)

As a % of Total Tax Take

2010

3,924

12.4

2011

3,520

10.3

2012

4,216

11.5

2013

4,270

11.3

2014

4,614

11.2

2015

6,872

15.1

2016

7,351

15.4

2017

8,201

16.2

2018

10,400

18.7

 

The Deputy will be aware that the years 2009 and 2010 represented the lowest points in the collection of corporation tax during the fiscal crisis.  The pre-crisis peak by value collected was c.€6.7 billion in 2006, and corporation tax represented 16% of total net tax receipts in 2003.

I acknowledge that Corporation tax (CT) receipts, amounting to almost 19% of tax receipts in 2018, represent a sizable element of our overall Exchequer tax receipts. However, it should be noted that by way of context that combined income tax and VAT account for about two thirds of our overall receipts. Corporation tax receipts are performing strongly, driven by increased company profitability.

I have asked my officials to look at potential policy options to mitigate against the risk of an over-reliance on corporation tax, to ensure the sustainability of the public finances, and work is ongoing in this regard.

Actions taken by the Government to mitigate the risks associated with the potential volatility of corporation tax revenues include:

- The creation and funding of the rainy day fund.

- Prioritising reduction of debt.

- Running an Exchequer surplus in 2018.

- Continuing to broaden the tax base, through measures such as the restoration of 13.5% VAT for the hospitality sector and introduction of sugar-sweetened drinks tax.