A proposal by the Green Party to charge a tax of 1c upon all texts messages sent in Ireland has been referred to as double taxation and deemed as “unfair and injust” by Tommy McCabe, director of the Irish Cellular Industry Association (ICIA).
“Consumers are already paying 21.5pc VAT on all phone charges, so this would amount to double taxation,” said McCabe.
The amount of money that could potentially be raised from such a tax would not even cover anywhere near the amount of money the Green Party suggests it would, he added.
Even the applicability of this text tax is questionable: when you consider that a lot of texts are essentially free through text bundles, this move would distort competition, explained McCabe.
This tax would hit hardest those who can least afford it, added McCabe, explaining that teenagers and the unemployed are more likely to communicate via text as it can be less expensive than making phone calls.
While the Green Party were unavailable for comment at the time, it was noted that Mary White had mooted the idea of the 1c text tax in the Dáil on Tuesday afternoon.
By Marie Boran