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Budget 2022 - Enterprise, Trade and Employment

The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment’s full Budget 2022 allocation is €898m, which is broken down between €358m in current funding, €523m in core capital and €17m in Covid capital funding. This represents an increase of over 13.2% or €103m on the Department’s 2021 core allocation.

Watch on YouTube: Tánaiste's Budget Day 2022 video

Budget 2022 aims to prepare businesses for the challenges and opportunities of the future economy, including increased digitalisation and climate change, as well as adjusting to remote working. 

Below are some of the business focused measures contained in Budget 2022: 

Budget 2022 - Enterprise, Trade and Employment infographic

Enterprise Agencies

The Department has increased its allocation to its enterprise agencies which have taken on additional responsibilities and are continuing to deal with the impacts of Covid and Brexit.

Of Enterprise Ireland’s €31m increase, €20m is being allocated to the Climate Transition Fund and Digital Transition Fund, while there is €5m each for the Food Transformation Fund and the Regional Enterprise Development Fund (REDF). There is also an allocation of €1 million for the Design and Crafts Council of Ireland to continue to drive commercial success and build capacity across the design and crafts sector.

An additional €26.5m is being allocated to the IDA, which includes €10m for their Regional Property Programme, €7m for the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT), €5.5m for FDI grant activity and €4m for Advanced Manufacturing Centre.

Funding for the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) meanwhile will increase by €2m. Budget 2022 funding will allow each of the 31 LEOs to enhance the role they play in driving local and regional development, including the Regional Enterprise Plans. A further €1.205m is being allocated to InterTradeIreland. 

Regulatory Agencies

The Department received a 3.5% increase in current funding of €12m which will allow for additional resources to be provided to the Department’s Regulatory bodies. The increase will allow for ongoing recruitment of additional staffing and other resources for the Workplace Relations Commission, Health and Safety Authority, and the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission. Crucially it will also assist the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement with its transformation into a statutory and independent Agency. 

€20m Digital and Climate Funds

Two of the greatest transformations facing enterprise are the impacts of digitalisation and climate change. For that reason, the Climate Transition Fund and the Digital Transition Fund will each be allocated €10m. Both funds will be managed by Enterprise Ireland, and will not be restricted to client companies. 

€35m Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund

Under Budget 2022 an additional allocation has also been made to the Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund (DTIF), as committed to in the National Development Plan. An additional allocation of €35m to DTIF will ensure that previous commitments can be met and a new call for projects in 2022 will be funded. 

COVID-19 Funding

Budget 2022 allocates €17m in once-off funding for COVID-19 impacted businesses and will ensure that both the IDA and Enterprise Ireland can continue to fund important projects aimed at the upscaling of testing and fast track expanded production of COVID-19 relevant products, as well as meeting the cost of any claims under the Covid Credit Guarantee Scheme. 

In addition, some €79m from savings this year will be used to meet commitments on various Covid Schemes arising in 2022 and as a result almost €100m of discrete Covid funding will be available to assist businesses as they emerge from the grip of the pandemic in 2022.  

€3m European Space Agency

An increase of €3m is being allocated to the European Space Agency (ESA) Programme to ensure that Irish companies will be able to secure additional ESA related contracts. 

Remote working

In line with the other measures taken by Government to promote blended working arrangements for workers, the amount of light and heat expenses allowable for tax relief will increase to 30% of the total expenditure. This will help offset some of the costs workers incur while working at home. 

Increase in the Minimum Wage

Following a recommendation of the Low Pay Commission, the National Minimum Wage will be increased by €0.30 to €10.50. 

Innovation Equity Fund

The Department intends to create an Innovation Equity Fund to increase private equity investment in domestic high innovation enterprises. The Fund, worth €90m, will consist of equal contributions of €30m from each of the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), the European Innovation Fund (EIF), and the Department’s contribution will be met by savings this year, to ensure that this important measure can progress in 2021. 

Employment Investment Incentive (EII)

Budget 2022 confirms that the Employment Investment Incentive scheme will be extended to 2024 and opened up to a wider range of investment funds. It will allow greater capacity for investors to redeem their capital without penalty and remove the rule that 30% of an investment in an EII company must be spent before relief can be claimed.