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Snippet Contents:

Some €40 million is being provided for primary care developments, which will allow a number of initiatives to go ahead. In particular, the Government looks forward to further progress in relation to the GP contract and we hope agreement can be reached on the introduction of additional services throughout 2018.
I also acknowledge that continued investment in primary care, including further GP contractual developments, will require a multi-annual approach. That is why, with regard to the capital envelope, an additional €471 million has been made available to cover the period 2018 to 2021. This represents, on average, an additional €120 million each year. It will allow for investment in critical infrastructure, including the delivery of the national children’s hospital and many investments in primary and community care schemes. Further details will be provided by the Minister for Health later today.
Improving health services, however, is only one of the ways in which we can make a healthier Ireland happen. With this in mind, I am increasing excise duty on a pack of 20 cigarettes by 50 cent, with a pro rata increase on other tobacco products. This will bring the price of cigarettes in the most popular price category to €12.
Furthermore, in line with the commitment made in the programme for Government, my predecessor announced his intention to introduce a tax on sugar-sweetened drinks following the completion of an extensive public consultation process.