Why Ireland cannot allow multinationals exploit tax system

by Business Editor David Murphy Question: what do Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and Ireland have in common? Answer: they are all countries used by multinationals to aggressively manage their tax bills. The Irish are slipping into bad company. Tax on profits is 12.5% in Ireland. There are limited write-offs which allow companies to reduce their tax bills to an average effective tax rate of 11.9%, says Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton. But some US multinationals are paying far lower rates. The …

Dawn of the Deal-Makers

By David Murphy, Business Editor This week came an insight into how the new Insolvency Service of Ireland will operate: it hinges on deal-makers. When Ireland’s financial crisis first began to detonate, the then Government quickly established Nama to filter out the large property and development loans from the banks. That was in 2009. In 2013, attention is finally turning to ordinary borrowers. This week the director-designate of the new Insolvency Service of Ireland, Lorcan O’Connor, made his first public …

Let’s not get carried away with misplaced optimism

By David Murphy, Business Editor There is a definite change in the air. The beginning of 2013 is defined by economic signals which indicate, at least, that the worst could be over. Unemployment remains extremely high, although steady, at just below 15%; house prices show signs of stabilisation after an enormous 50% collapse; and the economy is no longer shrinking. The relentless demise of recent years would appear to be coming to a halt. In a sense, it is like …

Promissory note – the final frontier

  by Economics Correspondent Seán Whelan @seanwhelanRTE No doubt we could all think of better things to do with €3.1 billion than paying off the promissory notes used to bail out Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide Building Society. My suggestion is we pay for the Square Kilometre Array. The SKA, as its known, is a project to build the world’s biggest radio telescope, with a receiving area of – yes, you guessed – one square kilometre.  Not that it’s …