Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Questions (229)

Catherine Martin


229. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills the reserve surplus in the national training fund; the projected reserve surplus year-on-year over the next five years in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44590/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The accumulated surplus in the provisional accounts of the NTF at the end of 2018 amounts to €473m. The expenditure ceiling for the National Training Fund is set as part of the annual estimates process, having regard to the Government's overall budgetary and fiscal stance, and so the amount available for expenditure in any given year would only be decided as part of the budget process.

While we do not have an overall surplus projection for the next five years, the following table shows the projected surplus up to the end of 2020:

National Training Fund

Surplus for the Year


End of year Surplus Carried forward (€m)

2018 Provisional NTF Accounts


2019 REV



2020 Budget



The operation of the EU Fiscal Rules and the inclusion of the NTF in my Department's overall annual expenditure ceiling mean that, in the absence of an increased rate of contribution or the availability of additional fiscal space, additional expenditure cannot be sourced from the NTF without a corresponding drop in Exchequer expenditure. Substantial additional NTF expenditure has taken place in 2018 and 2019 and is planned for 2020 as a result of increases in the NTF levy.