Housing, sugar tax and social welfare: Budget ’18 at a glance

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Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe has delivered his Budget speech in the Dáil, setting out the government's budgetary measures for the year ahead.

Some €1.2 billion in new spending and tax cuts were announced this afternoon, in a plan that Minister Donohoe hopes will build on the progress made over the past few years.

Total expenditure in 2018 will amount to just over €60.9 billion – or €12,700 for every person in the country.

Here's Budget 2018 at a glance. 

  • €1.83 billion has been made available for housing, with 3,800 new social houses expected to be built by local authorities and approved housing bodies.

  • The esthablisment of a 'rainy day' fund with €1.5 bn to be transferred from the Ireland Strategic Investment fund.

  •  €5 per week increase in all weekly social welfare payments, including disability allowance, carer’s allowance, Jobseekers’ Allowance and State pension – effective from March 2018. 

  • Mortgage relief lowered to 75% for 2018, 50% 2019 and 25% in 2020.

  • Excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes to rise by 50 cents.

  • Health expenditure to increase by €685m, bringing next year's total to just under €15.3bn.

  • An additional 1,800 staff in frontline services across acute, mental health, disability, primary and community care sectors.

  • €13 million increase in the Overseas Development Aid budget.

  • 1,300 additional teaching post in schools for 2018 – reducing the student teacher ratio to 26:1.

  • VAT on sunbeds to increase to 23 per cent "in recognition of a clear link between sun beds and skin cancer"

  • A 30c per litre sugar tax on drinks with over 8g of sugar per 100ml, and a 20c per litre tax on drinks containing 5g to 8g of sugar per 100ml.