My Budget: ‘We have a serious problem with brain drain in Ireland’

Budget 2018: Ross McCarthy, businessman

Ross McCarthy, managing director of Keystone Procurement,  would have liked ‘more vision’ in the budget in terms of supporting Irish businesses. Photograph: Mary Browne

Ross McCarthy, managing director of Keystone Procurement, would have liked ‘more vision’ in the budget in terms of supporting Irish businesses. Photograph: Mary Browne

 

Ross McCarthy (39) is the managing director of Keystone Procurement, a consultancy firm that advises businesses and public bodies on the State procurement system.

Mr McCarthy’s small-medium enterprise (SME) employs five people. He would have liked to see “more vision” in the budget in terms of supporting Irish businesses, he said.

While the level where an individual will start paying the higher rate of income tax was raised from €33,800 to €34,550 yesterday, it was still too low to be competitive, he said.

“We have a serious problem with brain drain in Ireland. People are seeing the value, and the work and life environment is better abroad.”

Mr McCarthy said that from a businessman’s perspective the Irish political system, and the recent budget did not grasp the problems facing SMEs. “I would have liked to see a greater commitment to making work pay. This Budget seemed to have a focus on social justice in particular, rather than being commercially or economically driven,” he said.

According to Mr McCarthy, the Government’s response to Brexit had been consistently preoccupied with the food and agri sector, and was neglecting service-based businesses. We need to “make sure it’s attractive for people to move here”, he said.