The government has been urged by the Chamber of SMEs to widen the 25% tax bracket to include all those earning up to €100,000.

The proposal is part of a package suggested by the chamber for the forthcoming budget to push economic recovery and growth. 

It said that widening the tax brackets, particularly extending the middle 25% tax bracket for income up to €100,000 (from the current €60,000) would help businesses in their recovery.

It also said excise duty should be removed for all goods that do not carry the excise identifier marker, to avoid unfair competition.

The chamber (formerly known as the GRTU) urged the government to maintain support for businesses that were the worst hit by the impact of COVID-19, including the wage supplement, rent and electricity subsidies.

It also proposed 'aggressive' grants to support the strengthening of business in the post-COVID scenario.

In other proposals, it said that employees who opt not to be vaccinated should not be eligible for any quarantine leave. There should also be no quarantine leave for people who choose to travel to areas where quarantine is necessary upon their return. 

In other proposals, the chamber called for action to address high shipping costs and incentives to help local businesses produce products previously imported. 

It called for an export guarantee scheme to boost exports to Africa.   

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