Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe has said he is “so committed” to retaining Ireland’s low corporate tax rate that he is not willing to sign up to a new international tax agreement in its current form.
130 countries and jurisdictions have signed up to a plan that will bring sweeping new reforms to global corporation tax rules.
“We are not in that agreement,” Minister Donohoe, who is also President of the Eurogroup said on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland.
“We are committed to the negotiation to see if we can enter the agreement at some point, but I am making the case for 12.5%.
Minister Donohoe said the rate of 12.5% has been a key feature of Ireland’s economic policy for decades.
“I am so committed that I decided I could not enter into the agreement.”
However, he did not rule out the possibility of agreeing in the future.
“It depends on what the final agreement is,” Mr Donohoe said.
“The agreement as currently drafted refers to at least 15%, so the question is in the key features of the agreement.
“For example in relation to the base, which is how much you can actually tax in your own jurisdiction – it does not have the certainty of precision that is needed for this country to make an evaluation of what to do,” he said.
He said whether Ireland is in the final agreement or not will depend on the detail that is in it.
“Early next week I am going to launch a public consultation on the agreement as currently drafted, to really brief our business community stakeholders in Ireland regarding what is there at the moment and how things could change,” he said.