• Cyril McAree

Fáilte Ireland Welcomes Ten Measures For Tourism In The July Jobs Stimulus Package

Fáilte Ireland is welcoming the tourism specific and wider economic measures announced in the Government’s July Jobs Stimulus Package. The National Tourism Development Authority says there are ten measures that will directly help tourism businesses and save jobs.

“The Government’s July Stimulus Package contains ten measures which we believe will help rebuild the tourism sector and save thousands of jobs in the industry,” according to CEO Paul Kelly.

“Economically tourism was hit first, hit hardest and will take the longest to recover from this crisis. I want to thank Minister Martin and her officials for recognising concerns raised particularly around seasonal workers and the Wage Subsidy Scheme, expansion of the Restart Grant and adaptation costs for businesses. Fáilte Ireland will begin work immediately on administering the €26million Business Adaptation Grant in addition to the €10million Business Continuity Fund for Coach Operators and work with the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation on the Credit Guarantee Scheme.  The Stay and Spend incentive is innovative and we expect it will provide an impetus for people to take breaks in the off-peak season.”

The 10 Measures for Tourism include:

  1. Business Adaptation Grant: The Government announced €26million in funding to be administered by Fáilte Ireland for tourism and hospitality businesses to contribute to re-opening costs incurred, including costs of implementing Fáilte Ireland’s Guidelines for Re-opening.

  2. Coach Tourism Business Continuity Scheme: €10million Government funding to be administered by Fáilte Ireland to assist the coach tourism sector.

  3. Stay and Spend Incentive: This new initiative will incentivise taxpayers to support tourism accommodation and food service providers during the off-peak season.

  4. Employment Wage Support Scheme: This scheme will run until April 2021 and crucially, will include seasonal staff and new employees.

  5. Restart Grant for all SMEs: Thousands more businesses in the tourism sector which were not previously eligible for the Restart Grant scheme, such as B&Bs, will now be eligible for funding of up to €25,000 to help with the costs associated with re-opening and reemploying workers following COVID-19 closures.

  6. Credit Guarantee Scheme and other liquidity and enterprise measures: Fáilte Ireland will work with DBEI to make this €2billion scheme effective for the sector.

  7. Extended waiver of commercial rates: €600million extension.

  8. Tax Refunds: To provide immediate cash-flow support to businesses, the early carry-back of trading losses will be allowed, leading to an immediate refund of some or all of corporation tax paid.

  9. Income Tax Relief: There will be a new income tax relief for the self-employed who have incurred losses in 2020 as a result of COVID-19.

  10. Tax Warehousing: The Government will also pass legislation to confirm the previously announced warehousing of tax liabilities. This will allow businesses affected by COVID-19 to delay payment of their PAYE and VAT debts in part or in full for a set period with no interest or penalties.

“The tourism industry is at the core of our economy and makes a critically important contribution to regional development, job creation and the wellbeing and development of our country.  Our task now, the one we are committed to, is to sustain and support tourism through this crisis and implement the measures contained in the Jobs Stimulus Package with urgency,” concluded Paul Kelly. 

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