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You are here: Home » News and Events » Press release archive » 2016 press releases » Budget 2017 must help food sector maintain competitiveness in UK ...

Budget 2017 must help food sector maintain competitiveness in UK and domestic markets following Brexit

Food and Drink Industry Ireland (FDII), the Ibec group that represents the food sector, today launched its Budget 2017 submission, which calls on government to introduce a series of measures so that the sector can maintain its competitiveness and achieve its growth potential against the backdrop of Brexit and a significant weakening of sterling. Government must show more ambition in tax schemes which support SME growth, increase funding for enterprise led training and up-skilling and avoid discriminatory taxes of food and beverage products.
FDII Director Paul Kelly said: “41% of our food and drink exports go to the UK (€4.4bn) and our industry is beginning to be severely impacted by exchange rate exposure. Budget 2017 must support industry efforts to maintain our markets in the UK as well as ensuring that in the domestic market, food companies remain competitive against imports and the threat of cross-border shopping. To do this we need to stay competitive and keep business costs under control. At a time of such uncertainty government also needs to avoid ill-considered public health measures such as soft drink taxes and focus instead on supporting industry efforts in product innovation and workplace wellbeing”

The FDII submission calls for:
• Tax measures to support SME growth and innovation and ensure level playing field with UK
o A seed enterprise investment scheme
o Capital Gains Tax entrepreneurs relief
o An improved R&D tax credit model
• Increased funding for enterprise led training and up-skilling initiatives
o Re-allocation of National Training Fund to be more employer/employee focussed
o Increase the level of Skillnets funding
o Invest in the new Apprenticeship model
• No additional tax on soft drinks
• Supports for a competitive dairy sector
• Incentivisation of workplace wellbeing initiatives
o Tax credits for workplace wellbeing initiatives
o Gym and sports membership to be excluded from Benefit in Kind taxation
o Supports for 5 a day fruit and vegetable at work scheme
Monday, 22 August 2016

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