Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 37-43
 Header Item Tax Reliefs Cost
 Header Item Tax Code
 Header Item Diplomatic Representation
 Header Item Trade Agreements
 Header Item Immigration Policy
 Header Item Civil Registration Documentation
 Header Item Departmental Bodies Data

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 821 No. 3

First Page Previous Page Page of 100 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 37-43

Tax Reliefs Cost

 37. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if he will report on the total levels of tax expenditure on all of the tax reliefs granted by the Irish State under the Finance Acts down to 2013.  [49228/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that the total identifiable costs to the Exchequer which are currently available relate to income tax and corporation tax allowances, reliefs, exemptions and tax credits and are shown in Table IT6 on the Revenue Statistical Report for 2011 which is accessible on the Revenue website at www.revenue.ie. The information is located under the main chapter heading of Income Tax and shows the information for the years 2009 and 2010 which are the most recent years for which the necessary detailed historical information is available.

  That table showing costs of tax reliefs has been published on the website since 1996. Prior to that it had been included in every annual Revenue report going back to the tax year 1980/81. It would not be a practical exercise for Revenue to assemble an electronic version of the table for these years nor to provide the information requested for years prior to tax year 1980/81.

Tax Code

 38. Deputy Mick Wallace Information on Mick Wallace Zoom on Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the reason a fat and sugar tax was not introduced in the Finance Bill; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49210/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan There have been calls from a number of different quarters for me to introduce so called fat and sugar taxes as a means to curb obesity rates in the country. While I am not opposed to such a measure in principle, I’m aware that little research has been done in relation to the efficacy or impact of such a measure or indeed how these taxes would be designed and levied.

When introducing any tax measure intended to alter people’s behaviour, it is important to firstly to assess whether a tax measure is the most effective method of doing this or if better results could be achieved by other, non-fiscal, methods. Secondly it is necessary to evaluate if such a measure have unintended consequences on other areas.

Therefore, I believe that before any such taxes could be seriously considered, further work is required in relation to the possible nature and design of such taxes. Work is also needed to consider how such taxes would be implemented and collected, and an analysis of the impact of the proposal on employment, on the cost of living and cross border trade is also required.

Finally, it should be noted that the Danish Government withdrew the saturated fat tax it introduced in 2011, citing higher prices to consumers, higher administration costs, putting Danish jobs at risk, and an increase in cross-border purchases withdrawal.

Diplomatic Representation

 39. Deputy Terence Flanagan Information on Terence Flanagan Zoom on Terence Flanagan asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore if he will provide a detailed breakdown of all interactions between the new Irish ambassador to the United States, Anne Anderson, and members of the US Congress since taking office; if these communications were in person, in writing or via the telephone; the issues raised by the members of the US Congress in these communications; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49672/13]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore Contact with members of the US Congress is a regular feature of the work of the Ambassador of Ireland to the United States. In this context, Ambassador Anderson has frequent, ongoing contacts with a wide range of Congress members on a range of issues, including economic and political issues. At present, US immigration reform proposals are a particular focus of these contacts. On behalf of the Government, the Ambassador is continuing intensive follow-up work with all of our contacts on Capitol Hill and particularly with the Republican Members of the House, as well as coordinating lobbying efforts with our Irish-American community representatives.                    

Trade Agreements

 40. Deputy John Browne Information on John Browne Zoom on John Browne asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore if he will respond to correspondence (details supplied) regarding trade agreements and so on; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49733/13]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore This question relates to a query by a student enrolled to study for a Ph.D. who wishes to have details of international agreements which the State has not signed. As the Deputy will be aware, there is a large number of international agreements, covering a very wide range of subjects and falling within the functional responsibility of a number of Departments. Consideration is given, on an ongoing basis, to the desirability of Ireland signing, or becoming a party to, agreements which it has not already signed. The status of such agreements is kept under review in the context of the ongoing assessment and prioritisation of Ireland’s international and domestic commitments.

  Given the large number of international agreements to which this question relates, the Deputy will understand that it would not be practical to furnish a full list of the details sought. However, if the individual concerned has questions in relation to a particular agreement (or agreements) my officials would be happy to provide him with more detailed information themselves and/or to direct him to the appropriate line Department. I would invite the individual to address any further queries to my Department directly, at http://www.dfa.ie/home/index.aspx?id=78746.

  Details of the international agreements to which the State is already party are available on the electronic Irish Treaty Series, at http://www.dfa.ie/home/index.aspx?id=42915. The individual concerned has specific queries on international agreements relating to the World Trade Organisation which he may wish to address to the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.

Immigration Policy

 41. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore his plans to meet with officials from the US embassy and consular service in Dublin to discuss matters of concern to the Government such as immigration reform.  [49748/13]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore My Department has ongoing contact with the US Embassy in relation to a range of issues regarding our bilateral relationship. In relation to the issue of US immigration reform, I refer the Deputy to my most recent reply on the issue, PQ 48806 of 19 November 2013.

Civil Registration Documentation

 42. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore his views on correspondence (details supplied) regarding a non-impediment letter.  [49812/13]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade issues Certificats de Coutume to facilitate Irish citizens who are entering into a marriage or civil partnership abroad. It is the responsibility of the people getting married to ensure that they have the correct documentation in place to satisfy the legal requirements of the country in which they are getting married. South Africa requires foreign nationals to submit a Certificat de Coutume (letter of freedom) in order to register marriages of foreign nationals which have taken place in South Africa. In this case the Irish national involved failed to obtain a Certificat de Coutume prior to their marriage.

Regrettably it is not possible for my Department to backdate a Certificat de Coutume to a date in the past as the Certificat de Coutume is based on a statutory legal declaration made by the applicant and as such can only be issued after receipt of the statutory declaration.

If a civil letter of freedom is required for a forthcoming marriage in South Africa or elsewhere, my Department would be happy to process the application for the individual at very short notice.

Departmental Bodies Data

 43. Deputy Shane Ross Information on Shane P.N. Ross Zoom on Shane P.N. Ross asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore the number of quangos operating under the aegis of his Department; the total number of directors sitting on their boards; the aggregate fees incurred by the State in paying the remuneration of directors of these quangos; the number of quangos that have been created since the formation of the Government; the number that have been disbanded over the period; the projected cost to the taxpayer of the establishment and operation of these new quangos; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49954/13]

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Eamon Gilmore): Information on Eamon Gilmore Zoom on Eamon Gilmore There are no organisations of the type referred to by the Deputy under the aegis of my Department.


Last Updated: 11/05/2020 14:26:52 First Page Previous Page Page of 100 Next Page Last Page