Independent Councillor Patrick Clarke Welcomes NI Affairs Committee VAT Inquiry

Independent Slieve Croob Councillor Patrick Clarke has welcomed a decision by the NI Affairs Committee to setup an inquiry regarding the VAT rate on tourism and hospitality industry in Northern Ireland.

dn_screenHe said: “I welcome the very positive move by the Northern Ireland Affairs Select Committee to now set up an inquiry to look at the VAT rate on tourism and hospitality services in Northern Ireland.

“The UK’s current VAT rate places Northern Ireland’s tourism and hospitality sector at a major disadvantage due to the Republic of Ireland VAT rate of 9% for the tourism and hospitality industry.

“There is a major disparity regarding the VAT rates between Northern Ireland and the South of Ireland which affects alot of the tourism and hospitality sector within border counties and also Newry Mourne and Down region at a disadvantage.

“The hospitality sector generates £1.1billion for the economy and employs 45,000 in food and drink service alone, so a lower rate of VAT would provide the hospitality sector with greater confidence in securing jobs and creating more in the future.

“Newry Mourne and Down District Council has placed tourism as the major key driver to stimulate further economic activity and jobs across the District.