Fresh pleas over rates hardship

The Government is coming under increasing pressure to carry out a root and branch review of day-to-day enterprise costs to determine how expensive it is for firms to do business here.

The Government is coming under increasing pressure to carry out a root and branch review of day-to-day enterprise costs to determine how expensive it is for firms to do business here.

ISME, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, led the clamour for a fresh investigation in an effort to compare those findings with that of other European based markets.

“For too long the headline costs of new rents and new hires have been touted as the going rates of costs, ignoring the fact that most SMEs are paying at legacy prices and thereby less competitive,” the organisation said in a statement.

“Current inflation according to the CSO is 0.4 per cent, a composite rate for all price changes, which the association feels should be even lower, if government influenced business costs, both national and local, were curtailed, similar to cost reductions in the private sector. It is shocking to still see health and education running at 13 per cent and 10.4 per cent respectively.”

Should no State-led action emerge, ISME suggested retailers be afforded a double tax allowance on their monthly rental costs.