Exchequer figures indicate the Government’s tax take in the first six months of the year was €500m higher than had been expected.

According to figures from the Department of Finance, there was a €221m excess in the tax take to the end of June when compared to what was anticipated in Budget 2014.

However when €285m of corporation tax - due in June but not received until this month - is included, the additional take rises to €506m.

These corporation tax receipts were delayed by SEPA, according to the department.

With the delayed payment factored in, all tax categories were ahead of target in the first six months of the year with the exception of customs.

Almost €2.4bn was received in excise duties to the end of June, according to the figures, €149m (6.7%) higher than anticipated. Meanwhile VAT take was almost €5.56bn, €113m (2.1%) above expectations.

Both of these categories have been boosted by a surge in car sales in the first six months of the year, which were around 23% higher than in the same period of 2013.

Corporation tax take was above €2bn in the first six months of the year if the late payment is included, putting the category €102m (5.2%) above expectations.

Meanwhile income tax, including the universal social charge, stood at €7.83bn, or €64m (0.8%) higher than anticipated.

Stamp duty stood at €328m, which was €51m (18.4%) ahead of target, while capital gains tax, capital acquisitions tax and the local property tax all saw marginal gains on Budget expectations.

Overall, the Exchequer deficit stood at almost €4.94bn by the end of June - €1.65bn lower than at the same point of 2013.

Net voted expenditure stood at €20.5bn by the end of last month, which was €119m (0.6%) below target and €450m (2.1%) lower than at the same time last year.

Most Government departments continued to under-spend, according to the figures, however the Department of Health’s budget overrun with spending €206m (3.4%) above target.