Day two of Budget 2012 sees Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan, attempting to regain control of the country's finances and get people back to work.

There is confirmation of a 2% hike in VAT and the introduction of a household charge.

According to Michael Noonan, "The primary purpose of this budget is to support the creation of jobs in the short term, the medium term and the long term".

The budget saw a 2% increase in the standard rate of VAT and the introduction of an interim household charge of €100. In an attempt to ease the strain on the lower paid, the starting rate for exemption from the universal social charge was raised moving 330,000 people out of liability to pay the universal social charge.

Following the announcement, Labour's newest TD, Patrick Nulty announced that he would be voting against the measures.
Michael Noonan stated that he wanted to provide certainly about the earnings for ordinary people by announcing no increase in income tax, or narrowing of tax bands. The cornerstone of the tax hikes was most certainly the 2 % VAT hike.