A Government review – Tourism VAT in Northern Ireland
The Government will shortly be announcing the terms of reference for their review into the impact of Tourism VAT in Northern Ireland. The review was announced in July as part of the Conservative-DUP confidence and supply agreement following the general election, and was confirmed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Phillip Hammond, in the 2017 Autumn Budget.
The UK’s 20% Tourism VAT rate is one of the highest in Europe, and Northern Ireland hospitality and tourism businesses are particularly vulnerable due to the land border they share with the Republic of Ireland, which enjoys a tourism VAT rate of 9%. Independent research has shown that a reduction in the rate of tourism VAT to 5% would stimulate investment and spending in the hospitality industry across the country, contributing £4.6 billion to the Exchequer, and leading to a reduction in the UK’s balance of trade deficit by £23 billion over 10 years.
We have added a page to our website that has all the information needed to stay up to date and involved with the review, including our Factsheet on the benefits of a Cut to Tourism VAT in Northern Ireland. The Factsheet shows the wide range of benefits that a reduction to Tourism VAT in Northern Ireland would bring, both to the exchequer and to the public finances, creating 2,713 new jobs and delivering £109 million to the economy over 10 years.
We look forward to submitting our extensive research to the government and continuing to lead our industry’s voice in ensuring the opportunity is taken to allow us to compete on a fair playing field with our European counterparts.
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