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VAT Rate Reductions

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 27 September 2018

Thursday, 27 September 2018

Ceisteanna (71, 74, 75)

Eamon Ryan

Ceist:

71. Deputy Eamon Ryan asked the Minister for Finance the estimated cost of reducing to 0% the current 23% VAT on digital school books; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39288/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Eamon Ryan

Ceist:

74. Deputy Eamon Ryan asked the Minister for Finance the estimated cost of reducing VAT on condoms to 0%. [39313/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Eamon Ryan

Ceist:

75. Deputy Eamon Ryan asked the Minister for Finance the estimated cost of reducing VAT on all menstrual products from 23% to 0% and 13.5%, respectively, including but not limited to such products as menstrual cups, disc and reusable menstrual underwear; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39314/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 71, 74 and 75 together.

I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that the VAT rating of goods and services is subject to EU VAT law, with which Irish VAT law must comply. In accordance with the EU VAT Directive the standard rate of VAT, currently 23%, applies to the supply of digital school books.

The VAT Directive also provides that Member States may apply either one or two reduced rates to certain goods and services listed in Annex III of the Directive, including the supply of products used for contraception and sanitary protection. Under Irish legislation the supply of condoms is subject to the reduced rate of VAT, currently 13.5% and the supply of menstrual products, excluding sanitary towels and tampons, is subject to the standard rate of VAT, 23%.

In addition, the Directive allows for historic VAT treatment to be maintained under certain conditions and Ireland has retained the application of the zero rate of VAT on certain goods such as sanitary towels and sanitary tampons, but is prohibited from extending or applying this rate to other goods.

I am further advised by the Revenue Commissioners that traders are not required to separately identify the VAT yield generated from a particular product type or activity on their VAT returns. Therefore, it is not possible to provide an estimated cost of reducing the VAT rates on the specific products referred to by the Deputy.

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