Sir, – The central thesis of Fergal O’Rourke’s article (“Ireland Does It Reasonable About Corporate Tax,” Opinion & Analysis, Jul 12) is that our corporate tax policy, once legal, is fine. The bigger question is whether Ireland’s tax avoidance facilitation is right.
He argues that Ireland is not one of the “bad boys of the tax world” because “other countries are more blatantly protecting their national interests” and in any case we have come a long way since the infamous Apple tax avoidance case and our infamous “double Irish” and “double Dutch”. We shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves, because Ireland is finally facing an “ongoing battle to invest in an island on the periphery of Europe”.
That self-pitying special supplication doesn’t wash away. Ireland is a wealthy country with a highly educated population; we are full members of the EU; and thanks to our “soft power”, we have won a seat on the UN Security Council worldwide.
We exceed our weight in many areas, not least in the generosity of our response to natural disasters and the humanitarian work of Trócaire. Concern and other agencies.
But Ireland also surpasses its weight in an area that contradicts all that is good about our role and reputation in the world: we are the world leader in facilitating tax avoidance, as Patrick Honohan puts it, “by engaging in outrageous tax maneuvers close your eyes ”. “(” The government’s stance on a new tax treaty could prove costly, “Opinion & Analysis, July 17).
These maneuvers result in poor countries being plundered, especially the tax revenues they need to break free.
This equates to the colonial exploitation of the 21st century.
The game has been running for a while.
“The most untenable of these maneuvers should not have been allowed from the start,” as Patrick Honohan puts it. The government’s determination to be the last man to defend an unjust global tax regime is not only immorally untenable, but also short-sighted economic and industrial development policies. It is neither right nor wise. – yours, etc.