The ESB pays most of the 179 million euro dividends from the semi-states

Commercial semi-state-owned companies have paid a total of €179.4 million in dividends to the treasury so far this year.

The amount is already 18 percent, or €27.7 million, more than the €151.7 million paid into the treasury by semi-state-owned companies for the 12 months of last year.

In a written Dáil response to Social Democrat co-leader Catherine Murphy, Treasury Secretary Paschal Donohoe has confirmed that the bulk of the 2022 dividend will come from the ESB, at €121.6 million.

The figure paid by the ESB compares to €77.67 million paid out by the energy company in 2021 and €47.6 million in 2020.

With ESB’s rising operating profits of 357 million euros before exceptional items reported for the first six months of this year, Taoiseach Michael Martin has stated that the government can look forward to “a much higher dividend” from ESB in recent days.

Information provided by Mr Donohoe shows that the other main distributions this year are Ervia – which operates Bord Gáis and Irish Water – and Bord na Móna.

Mr. Donohoe has confirmed that Ervia’s 2022 dividend to the Treasury is €30.1 million, lower than previous years’ dividends. In 2021, Ervia paid out €38.43m, followed by €70.95m in 2020, €139.4m in 2019 and €139m in 2018.

Figures show that Bord na Móna’s 2022 dividend of €21.6 million is a multiple of dividends paid in previous years.

Bord na Móna’s dividend payout came as the semi-state more than tripled its pre-tax profit from €27.75 million to €85.1 million in the 12 months to the end of March this year.

The 21.6 million euros are offset by 6.39 million euros that were paid out in 2021. The semi-state paid no dividends in 2020, 2019 and 2018 and paid out 2.3 million euros in 2017.

Coillte’s dividend payout so far this year totals €5 million, compared to €25 million for 2021, €2.3 million for 2020 and €13 million for 2019.

Mr Donohue confirmed that no dividend has been received from Dublin Port Company so far this year and the last dividend of 4.1 million euros was paid in 2019.

Other semi-state port companies paid dividends this year, including Shannon Foyes Port at €400,000, Port of Waterford at €266,135 and Port of Cork, which paid €250,000 to the state.

EirGrid has yet to pay a dividend after paying out €4 million each for 2017 and 2021.

In his written reply to Ms. Murphy, Mr. Donohoe stated: “Any dividends from parastatals received by the Treasury form part of the total revenue collected by the State. The guidelines relating to the payment of such dividends are set out in the instrument or legislation covering the incorporation of each corporation.” The ESB pays most of the 179 million euro dividends from the semi-states

Fry Electronics Team

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