Europe must “keep its hands off” Irish taxation sovereignty to ensure rural Ireland can compete for investment and jobs, according to EU candidate Peter Casey.
Mr Casey said that Ireland’s corporation tax of 12.5 per cent was one of the major drivers of inward investment and he was fully behind the defence of Ireland’s right to determine its own taxation rates.
Mr Casey said; “Ireland’s lower rate of corporation tax has played a big role in driving inward investment. Our 12.5 per cent rate has given us a competitive edge that has been vital in job creation by multi-nationals in towns and cities across Ireland. After Hungary, Ireland has the lowest corporation tax rate in Europe and this has allowed many towns in rural Ireland to compete with much bigger economies for large-scale international investment. We need only look around at the global pharma, medtech, and digital players based in Ireland.
“The EU Commission has been targeting Ireland’s taxation sovereignty for some time. In Northern Ireland there is a strong lobby for a reduction in corporation tax. Southern counties would be in an extremely weakened position should that happen while a higher rate is imposed in the Republic by Europe.
“The Commission has proposed that by 2025 a system of qualified majority voting replaces the current requirement for unanimity around corporation tax policy within the union. That would mean a major shift in decision making on corporation tax which would be very bad news for our economy in terms of jobs, investment and taxation revenue.”
Mr Casey said he will also work to ensure Ireland does not lose out in taxation revenues as a result of the EU-proposed digital services tax.