TOURISM Minister Paschal Donohoe has insisted homeowners using online booking site Airbnb must provide “absolute clarity” on how much income they earn from renting rooms to tourists.
Mr Donohoe was speaking after it emerged the popular website will handover over user details to the Revenue Commissioner.
The website has 9,000 Irish users and Revenue is going after those who did not declare rental income from May last year.
Mr Donohoe said he does not think the move by the taxman will damage tourism or the popularity of the website in Ireland.
“Anybody who is working with Airbnb must provide absolute clarity in terms of the amount of income they are deriving from working with Airbnb,” he said.
Mr Donohoe said the issues should be dealt with “transparently”.
“It is important because there needs to be a level playing field between the type of accommodation Airbnb provide versus other forms of accommodation that are available to tourists coming to your country,” he said.
He said the company was doing important work and helping meet the needs of the growing number of tourists visiting Ireland.
“I believe companies like Airbnb are going to be an even bigger part of how Ireland gets more tourists into our country but also provides new forms of accommodation for certain kind of independent travellers. With that type of growth potential in mind it is important that any matters in relation to tax liability are clearly dealt with,” he added.