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Party Leaders Announce July Economic Statement

The VAT rate will be reduced as part of the July stimulus plan announced this evening.

There's also going to be changes to the help to buy scheme as part of the 7 billion euro package.

The surprise item is a reduction across the board in the 23 per cent rate to 21 per cent between September this year and February next year.

First time buyers will also get a boost.

For the rest of this year they will be able to get up to 10% or 30,000 euro back on the cost of a new home under the help to buy scheme - up from 5% or 20,000 at present.

There's to be a staycation subsidy back on 625 euro spent holidaying in Ireland which will take the form of a tax credit next year.

There will be access to grants of up to 25,000 euro for businesses as well as low interest loans.

Taoiseach Michael Martin says the package is extremely wide-ranging.

Tánaiste and Business Minister Leo Varadkar says the money will be pumped into the economy immediately.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan says the package will help to prevent businesses from closing across the country.

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