Gilmore rules out change to Ireland’s corporation tax rate

Creighton says alarming statements emerging from Berlin recently


Eamon Gilmore

has said he has made it clear in discussions with Germany’s

Social Democratic Party


(SDP) that Ireland’s corporation tax rate will not be changed.

He said he had told the party that the tax has been a long-term part of industrial strategy and was a matter of national competence.

"I spoke with the leader of the SDP, on a party-to-party basis, about the discussions that are taking place on the formation of a new government in Germany and wished him well in those discussions.

“The 10-point priority list that has been presented by the SDP as part of the discussions does not include a specific reference to Ireland’s corporation tax.’’

Mr Gilmore was replying to Fianna Fáil foreign affairs spokesman Brendan Smith, who asked him if he was concerned that two senior figures in the SDP, the party's budget spokesperson and general secretary, had described the tax rate as too low.

Lucinda Creighton (FG) said there was concern that a strategic and structured diplomatic offensive appeared to be lacking in response to the alarming statements emerging from Berlin in recent months.

Ireland's position
Mr Gilmore said political parties in Germany, including the SDP, knew Ireland's position on corporation tax, banking union and the ESM.

"I am satisfied from the discussions that I have had on a party-to-party basis with the leadership of the SDP that it is supportive of Ireland, and that if the negotiations for the formation of a new government in Germany are successful, if anything, our position as a country in our relations with Germany will be enhanced.''

Mr Gilmore said that if the new coalition arrangement was between hancellor Angela Merkel's party and the SDP it would enable the Irish Government to have political contact with both of the parties, which would be to our advantage.

Ms Creighton said she was not convinced that the composition of the German government reflecting the Irish oalition would somehow miraculously turn out to be a better arrangement for the Republic.

Mr Gilmore said his party and the Government would find a significant degree of comfort with the 10 priorities set down by the SDP.

Michael O'Regan

Michael O'Regan

Michael O’Regan is a former parliamentary correspondent of The Irish Times