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Defence Forces Remuneration

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 13 October 2020

Tuesday, 13 October 2020

Questions (199)

Duncan Smith


199. Deputy Duncan Smith asked the Minister for Defence the estimated cost of not subjecting the overseas pay of the Army and Naval Service to income tax in 2020; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29807/20]

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Written answers (Question to Defence)

I presume the Deputy is referring the basic pay and allowances (e.g. military service allowance, technical pay, etc.) of members of the Permanent Defence Force (PDF) serving overseas rather than Overseas Peace Support Allowance (OPSA) and Overseas Armed Peace Support Allowance (OAPSA), which are already paid to personnel serving overseas on a non-taxable basis.

It is not possible to precisely estimate the amount of tax foregone in 2020 on foot of such an exemption as the amount of tax collected varies from pay period to pay period depending on the number of personnel serving overseas, the duration of such service and the individual pay rates of the personnel concerned. The tax collected in each individual case will also vary from person to person depending on the personal tax credits, reliefs and exemptions provided by the Revenue Commissioners.

On the basis of the number of PDF personnel serving overseas at end September 2020, it is estimated that the annual amount of tax not collected would be some €3.5m (this does not include PRSI and USC). This figure includes all PDF personnel serving overseas (i.e. Army, Air Corps and Naval Service).

Any decision to grant such an exemption would be a matter for the Minister for Finance in the first instance.