Confirmation that the Irish government is to consider reducing or abolishing VAT on newspapers has been welcomed by the Fed (Federation of Independent Retailers).
Print and online publications are currently subject to 9 per cent VAT. In a bid to address the difficulties facing the news industry, the Fed is calling for the tax to be removed altogether.
The federation’s Irish president Martin Mulligan, who owns a store in Athlone, said: “We strongly believe that VAT on newspapers should be abolished completely. This would reduce cover prices and encourage more people to buy newspapers and benefit everyone in the news industry, including publishers, wholesalers and retailers.”
Mr Mulligan also repeated calls for wholesalers to abolish carriage charges and an end to dual supplies of newspapers by publishers.
He added: “Retailers are paying up to €150 a week in service charges and it is crippling small businesses. The fact that our newspapers are supplied by two different wholesalers just makes the situation worse because we are paying twice.”