Competition from private sector makes retaining Revenue staff difficult - Paschal Donohoe
Competition from the private sector is making it more difficult for Revenue to hold on to staff, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has said.
Mr Donohoe said he was aware of concerns from tax practitioners about the tax collector's resources.
"All of you [the business community] are in a position where you're paying rates of pay that are very competitive in an economy that's doing very well," Mr Donohoe said.
"We have key staff particularly in the Revenue Commissioners and elsewhere that we need to be retaining, and we're looking at how we can do it.
The concerns come as Revenue is set to recruit hundreds of extra customs inspectors on foot of Budget 2019. That is designed to take account of changes in the trading relationship between Ireland and the UK on foot of Brexit.
But in a domestic area known as the Employment and Investment Incentive Scheme (EIIS) - designed to provide tax relief to people who invest in businesses - practitioners have been complaining about delays in the system making it harder for clients to get tax clearance certificates.
Mr Donohoe was speaking at Independent News & Media's Budget 2019 breakfast event in Dublin today.
He said his decision to hike the rate of VAT on the hospitality sector to 13.5pc in one go, rather than on a graduated basis, was on the basis that "if you make a change in one direction when you cut it, then you must be willing to make a change in the same way in the other direction."
"I said pretty clearly last year that I was going to review this rate...if I had done it on a graduated basis, that would have meant I had to raise taxes in other ways to offset the Revenue loss that I then would have faced".