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New Licensing System will provide significant savings for retailers – Minister Perry

New web application portal to be operational by year end

“The new Integrated Licensing Application Portal for retailers will provide significant savings in terms of time and costs for businesses and entrepreneurs across Ireland through the simplification of the process for applying for multiple licences. This will help business competitiveness and will ultimately protect and create more jobs”, Minister for Small Business, John Perry, TD said today (Tuesday) as he chaired the first meeting of the Steering Group of licensing authorities.

Minister Perry said: “Regulation is essential to ensure national standards in health and safety, consumer protection, environmental quality, competition and provision of essential services but it is imperative that unnecessary burden is not placed on Irish businesses in the process. Streamlining licence application into a single web based application portal, whereby retailers can register once and apply for up to 25 separate licences, is a positive first step and a major reform of Government licensing process for businesses.

“The new licensing system will be developed for the retail sector in the first instance by the end of 2013 and rolled out to other sectors of the economy thereafter. It is one of the Government’s Disruptive Reforms in the Action Plan for Jobs 2013”.

The Disruptive Reform was adopted following a Forfás review in 2012 of 159 licenses for key sectors of business across the economy. The report concluded that the burden was unnecessarily high and a rationalisation was feasible to help reduce the licensing processes for business by up to one third.

Declan Hughes, Head of Enterprise and Trade, Forfás commented “The delivery of an integrated licensing application system for business offers real potential to ease the process of starting up a business in Ireland and will significantly reduce the work involved in annual renewals of licences. It will also contribute to maintaining Ireland’s position at the forefront of delivering advanced eGovernment services and using Information Technology to reduce costs for business and improve the delivery of services to business.”

The members of the Steering Group include the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the Department of Health and Children, the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the Courts Service of Ireland, the Health Service Executive, the Revenue Commissioners, the European Recycling Platform, the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner, the Health & Safety Authority, the County & City Managers Association / Local Authority (CCMA), the Irish Film Classification Office (IFCO), Phonographic Performance Ireland (PPI), WEEE Ireland, Inland Fisheries Ireland, Irish Music Rights Organisation Ltd (IMRO), An Post, The National Lottery, and Forfás.

The Steering Group of licensing authorities will meet regularly throughout 2013 to ensure the successful launch of the retail web portal by year end.