Sinn Féin Councillor for Templeogue-Terenure Fintan Warfield this evening rejected Fine Gael calls for a reduction in the VAT rate on new residential construction from 13.5% to 9%.

Speaking in opposition to the Fine Gael motion in South Dublin County Council, Cllr. Warfield said;

“The motion from Fine Gael Councillor William Lavelle is a demand led proposal to what is a supply side problem.

“It also has the added disadvantage of reducing much needed exchequer revenue at a time that it is still desperately needed.

“The Fine Gael team in South Dublin County Council were unaware of the cost to the exchequer and failed to identify where the money would be found to make the reduction in VAT possible.

“Reducing the VAT rate on new builds will not have the effect of stimulating residential construction nor will it stabilise house prices.

“The effect of the Fine Gael proposal would be to further overheat the market.

“The most obvious mechanism to address their objectives is an ambitious social housing build programme, which would in turn release the pressure on the private rental and sales market.

Cllr. Warfield concluded;

“Access to finance also remains a challenge for everyone but the largest developers”.

 The motion was defeated 15-10.