Red-tape drive aims to save businesses €60m a year

Drive to simplify transactions between businesses and State part of Action Plan for Jobs

The red-tape drive, being taken on the initiative of Minister for Jobs Richard Bruton, is designed to save businesses at least €60 million a year.  Photograph: Eric Luke

The red-tape drive, being taken on the initiative of Minister for Jobs Richard Bruton, is designed to save businesses at least €60 million a year. Photograph: Eric Luke

 

A drive to slash red tape to make transactions between businesses and the State cheaper and simpler will be included in the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs 2015, to be published later today.

The move, being taken on the initiative of Minister for Jobs Richard Bruton, is designed to save businesses at least €60 million a year and is part of a broader drive to improve competitiveness included in the plan.

Since the plan was first implemented Ireland has climbed steadily up the international rankings for competitiveness, with a knock-on impact on job creation.

A key measure in the plan is a new website through which businesses will be able to apply for all 160 licences that they may require from the State. Currently, businesses requiring different licences have to spend a considerable amount of time going to different licensing authorities.

First phase

Later in the year it will be extended to the wholesale sector, accommodation, food and the wider hospitality and leisure sectors and ultimately to all 160 licences that businesses are required to hold from the State.

This will simplify 220,000 transactions between businesses and the State. Other measures being delivered which will contribute to delivering on the target include:

A new online job-matching system, to be run by the Department of Social Protection;

The new post code system, which will simplify 180,000 transactions annually;

Improvements to business surveys by the State, which will simplify 85,000 transactions annually;

New e-services for motor tax and financial statements from Revenue;

Consolidation of existing maternity, adoption, parental and carer’s leave legislation into the Family Leave Bill.

A Government source said that today’s publication would be the major Government policy announcement on job creation for the year.

Multiannual process

Government sources say they are on course to deliver on that target during 2015, over 12 months early.

Earlier this month Mr Bruton predicted that the economy could hit full employment by the end of 2018 – Action Plan 2015 sets out the actions to be implemented during 2015 to help deliver on that.

It includes deadlines for each individual action and assigns lead responsibility in each case. A total of almost 1,000 actions have been implemented by 16 Government departments and dozens of State agencies over the past three years, and since the first Action Plan for Jobs was launched in 2012 an extra 80,000 people are at work and the unemployment rate has declined from 15.1 per cent to 10.6 per cent.