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Government announced a €6.5 million support package for those in the taxi sector

DUBLIN: The Government plans to unveil a special assistance package for taxi drivers who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Transport Minister Eamon Ryan has announced a €6.5 million support package for taxi, hackney and limousine operators. The new sectoral package was developed in consultation with the advisory committee on Small Public Service Vehicles (SPSV).

The package comprises €3 million for the continuation of the waiver of vehicle licence fees in 2022, €2 million for a one-time Motor Tax Refund scheme for taxi and hackney operators, and €1.5 million for an NCT fee refund scheme.

The COVID-19 benefits implemented in other sectors of the society are also from a broader perspective. Many of these support grants, including the Pandemic Unemployment Payment and the Enterprise Support Grant, are also accessible to taxi drivers.

The PUP will continue to allow self-employed, including SPSV drivers, up to €960 over an eight-week period. The scheme has been extended till February 2022.

Assistance of up to €1,000 will continue to be provided to business owners and drivers from Enterprise Support Grant to resume businesses that have been shut down as a result the pandemic.

Some people who received this support grant in 2020 found themselves back on the PUP in 2021. The minister explained that if their PUP payment is terminated on or after June 1, 2021, they will be able to reapply for the €1,000 grant.

“There is no doubt that Covid-19 has had a detrimental effect on our taxi industry. While our society now begins to recover from the impacts of this pandemic, I am keen to remove as many cost barriers as possible for our SPSV drivers to return to work,” Minister Ryan said. 

“The €6.5 million financial package I have announced today will give operators the consistent support they require over the rest of this year and into the year 2022,” he added.

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