Kerry hoteliers call for tourism VAT rate to be reduced to zero for at least a year

Irish Hotels Federation

Kerry hoteliers and guesthouse owners are calling for the tourism VAT rate to be reduced to zero for at least a year.

It’s among a series of measures the industry says are needed urgently so businesses can plan for recovery.

In Kerry, tourism supports 15,700 jobs and generated  €592m for the local economy prior to the COVID-19 crisis.

The Irish Hotels Federation is calling on the Government to implement a series of urgent measures to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the economy.

Nationally, 85% of hotels are closed with 260,000 employees laid off or on short-time.

Chair of IHF Kerry, Bernadette Randles says hoteliers appreciate the country is experiencing the greatest health crisis in living memory but every daily delay in implementing measures results in bigger risks to our tourism and hospitality industry.

The IHF is calling for local authority rates and water charges to be waived for a minimum of 12 months, measures to assist with cash flow and for the tourism VAT rate to be zero for a year and when the industry has recovered permanently restored to 9%.

It also wants Government grants to help businesses survive and for supports for seasonal employees who don’t currently qualify for COVID-19 related payments.