Budget 2013 announced in the Dáil

Wednesday 05 December 2012 17.13
Michael Noonan delivering his Budget 2013 speech
Michael Noonan delivering his Budget 2013 speech

In his Budget 2013 speech in the Dáil, the Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said there are manifest signs that the country is emerging from the worst of the economic crisis and the efforts of the Irish people are leading to success.

He said the bailout programme was being fulfilled, and that the country must get back to the markets at sustainable interests.

There will be no increase in excise duty on petrol or diesel.

From midnight, a packet of 20 cigarettes increases by 10 cent.

From midnight, excise duty on a pint or beer or cider will increase by 10 cent, on a standard measure of spirits by 10 cent, and on a bottle of wine by €1.

The rate of VRT and motor tax will increase from 1 January.

Minister Noonan said a property tax would be introduced at a rate of 0.18 per cent -- and for properties valued over one million euro it will be 0.25 per cent.

Unearned income for everyone else will become subject to PRSI in 2014.

From 1 July 2013, maternity benefit will be treated as a taxable income, but will continue to be exempt from the Universal Social Charge.

In his Budget speech, the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin said Public Service staff numbers will be reduced to around 287,000 in 2013.

In health, the Budget measures will result in the current 50 cent per item prescription charge for medical card holders being increased to €1.50.

People over 70 years of age with a medical card will have it replaced with a GP only card, if their weekly income is €600 to €700 for a single person or €1,200 to €1,400 for a couple.

The amount private patients have to pay for medicines each month, before the State covers the cost, rises from €132 to €144, which will save €10 million.

The health budget for next year will be €13.6 billion which the Government says represents an extra €150 million.