Noonan seeks to overcome tax barriers on entrepreneurship
The Department of Finance is launching a public consultation to gauge whether the State's tax policies do enough to boost entrepreneurship.
As the Government and trade unions were finalising the public sector pay deal, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said there is a perception among small businesses that the State's tax policy doesn't do enough to encourage and reward those that set up a business.
At the annual lunch of the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (Isme), Mr Noonan said the department has been reviewing the tax expenditures available.
"I am now seeking your views on what measures work in our tax system to encourage entrepreneurs and small business, and how they could be improved," Mr Noonan said.
"I want to know what tax-related barriers you feel there are to establishing new enterprises, and what can done to overcome these barriers."
At the lunch, Isme's new chairman James Coghlan said the body had been championing a campaign to end the tax discrimination against the self-employed. He claimed that they can, in some cases, pay up to eight times more tax than their PAYE counterparts on similar incomes.
"Our message is simple. Those on the same income should pay the same tax.
"The Taoiseach has indicated that Government will address this inherently unfair system in the next Budget.
"Ensuring that he keeps his promise will be a priority item on the Isme agenda."
Mr Noonan reiterated that he had made a number of commitments on tax changes to be introduced in Budget 2016 that impact on the self-employed and SMEs.
"As outlined in the Spring Economic Statement, there will be up to €750m available for tax reduction," he said.
"The majority of available resources will be used to reduce tax on work."