Sinn Féin have today published a proposal for an economic stimulus plan for the tourism and hospitality sectors.
This plan – amounting to over €860 million – would revive two sectors hit hardest by the Covid-19 pandemic, providing a particular boost to counties and regions heavily dependent on tourism and hospitality.
Under this scheme, every adult in the State would receive a voucher worth €200, while every child would be entitled to a voucher worth €100, to be spent in businesses in the tourism and hospitality sectors.
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport Darren O’Rourke TD said:
“The tourism and hospitality sectors have been two of the hardest hit during the Covid-19 pandemic and urgent government intervention is required to support workers and families and to save jobs and businesses.
“Tourism is the State’s largest indigenous industry, employing 265,000 people, with 68% of these jobs outside of Dublin.
“Around 92% of workers in the accommodation and food sectors have received the Pandemic Unemployment Payment or have been on the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme, while the Irish Tourism Industry Confederation is estimating a hit to the sector in the region of €3.5 billion in 2020.
“With restrictions on travel to the State remaining in place, Sinn Féin believes a substantial economic stimulus is urgently needed to revive these sectors. That is what we are proposing today.”
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Finance Pearse Doherty TD continued:
“As well as supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs, this plan will give workers and families the welcome option of a break away or days out after what has been an extraordinarily difficult period.
“Similar stimulus plans have been introduced around the world. Italy has a similar plan to encourage people to holiday at home, Vienna is giving residents vouchers for restaurants in the city and the United States is distributing billions of dollars in stimulus cheques directly to residents.
“Our plan would see each adult receive a voucher worth €200 to be used in domestic businesses in the tourism and hospitality sectors, while every child would be entitled to a voucher worth €100.
“This would be non-means tested and available to every resident in the State. That means it will assist those unable to afford a break, but also encourage those who can to spend their vouchers, plus more, in our local economies.
“This is an investment in jobs and businesses. Without intervention now, thousands of jobs will be lost permanently, costing the State considerably more in the long-run.”