Belfast Telegraph

Taxman's the winner as south hits boom

By Thomas Malloy

The Irish Government collected 20% more tax than it had planned last month as the economy boomed and more people returned to work.

The latest official figures – the last before the intense horse trading that will proceed next month's budget – show the south's economy is quickly picking up.

The data gives the Republic's Finance Minister Michael Noonan room for a much more generous budget than originally planned.

The taxman collected €2.54bn (£2bn) in a single month but had only planned to collect €2.1bn (£1.6bn).

The Government has now taken €24.9bn (£19.8bn) in taxes from the public since the beginning of the year.

Corporation tax– the taxes paid by companies – came in 82% ahead of target in August at €259m (£206m).

Stamp duties from house and share sales are 35.6% ahead of target so far this year.

And income tax – the biggest source of taxation – was 9.7% ahead of target at €1.3bn (£1m).

While the better-than-expected performance will spark hopes of a giveaway budget, the country remains mired in debt.

The gap between what the Irish state takes in was €6.33bn (£5bn) during the first eight months of the year.

Belfast Telegraph

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