NewsBrands Ireland, the representative body for Ireland’s national news publishers, has welcomed the decision by the Government to abolish VAT on print and digital newspapers in Budget 2023.
At 9%, Ireland has one of the highest rates of tax on newspapers in Europe and NewsBrands Ireland has long campaigned on the issue citing it as an unjust tax on information, learning and democracy. In all, 22 European countries including Denmark, the UK, Belgium, Norway, Austria and France, have lower rates of VAT on newspapers, as well as providing other direct and indirect supports for journalism.
Ann Marie Lenihan, CEO of NewsBrands Ireland, thanked the Government for “recognising the value of newspaper journalism in society and democracy” and added that: “NewsBrands Ireland will continue to campaign for journalism and the challenges it faces including the urgent reform of Ireland’s draconian defamation laws and addressing the dominance of tech platforms in the digital advertising market.”
“Irish people value trusted journalism, and this is borne out in research which shows that 82% read a print or digital newspaper every week. The news publishing industry is future focused and this VAT reduction will provide our sector with the financial leverage to continue our investment in the transition to digital and investment required to ensure citizens have continued access to fact-checked, trusted journalism, “ adds Colm O’Reilly, chairman of Newsbrands Ireland and COO of the Business Post Group.