Friday 23 March 2018

'A recovery in the economy isn’t the same thing as a healed society' - Donohoe

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Finance Minister, Paschal Donohoe has said that a recovery in the Irish economy is not the same as a "healed society."

Speaking to CNBC reporters at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the Minister said that the Irish economy was experiencing a gradual improvement, with growth spread across the entire country, and across more parts of the economy, however he said that more was needed to be done,

"We have to ensure that the changing economy makes a big difference to people’s lives," Minister Donohoe said,

"We have to ensure that we have stable foundations for the future, and then, politicians of the center, like myself, have to really get the fact that a recovery in the economy isn’t the same thing as a healed society, and we have to understand the gap, and rise to that challenge," he continued.

On the matter of Brexit, the Finance Minister said that Ireland had already received and seen an increase in investment and employment in the area of financial services.

"We were always very clear that any benefit that would come from it would happen in a gradual way."

Minister Donohoe went on to say that his department had already made the decision to change its economic growth forecast for the future on account of Brexit,

"We’re now looking and aiming to deliver growth of approximately 3pc across the coming years, and we’ve downgraded that to take account of the fact of what we think Brexit could create, so we can plan for a more sustainable policy base for our country for the coming years."

The Finance Minister when on to say that there would be no change to the country’s corporate tax rate,

"We have a flat, stable rate, which is low across a very large base of economic activity, and we will continue to protect and maintain that while making the changes that we know need to be made," he said.

When asked if US President Donald Trump had changed the conversation around tax in Europe, the Minister said that he believed that the mood around corporate tax was changing globally, citing what President Trump had done, as well as what the UK and France have said they will do around tax,

"What we are very clear on is that certainty regarding our rate is a core part of our proposition," Minister Donohoe said.

"We are now phasing out the Double-Irish, and we eliminated stateless companies from our tax code in 2013, and we have brought in mandatory disclosure of information regarding tax planning in our jurisdiction, and we’re one of the first countries now to have exchange of information between the tax authorities across the EU."

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