The Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) has asked the Irish government to extend the 9 percent concessionary value-added tax (VAT) rate to 2014. The Irish government lowered the VAT rate from 13.5 percent in 2011. The lower rate covers restaurants, hotels and tourist attractions.
The 9 percent VAT, which was to end at the end of 2013, has boosted tourism in Ireland and increased hotel and guesthouse bookings. If the VAT is not extended, the IHF fears that many hotels and businesses will close, especially rural hotels, which are struggling to remain open.