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Trumped? Nope. Ireland to retain corporate tax advantage over the US

Senior economic adviser to president-elect says rate to be cut to 15-20 per cent

Despite plans by president-elect Donald Trump to repatriate American multinationals' funds, Ireland's corporate tax advantage over the US is likely to persist.

According to Stephen Moore, a senior economic advisor to Trump, Ireland will retain its corporate tax advantage over the United States, reported The Irish Times.

In an interview on Friday, Moore said that even if Congress was to pass the corporate tax cuts proposed by Trump within the first 150 days of his presidency, the nation would be unable to compete with Ireland's rate of 12.5 per cent.

"Ireland will still be lower than the United States so you will still have a competitive advantage over the United States but the advantage will be much lower than it is currently," Moore told Irish radio station Newstalk.

Ireland's educated and mostly Anglophone workforce, as well as its membership of the European Union, makes it an attractive location for many American corporations. Even without the €13bn tax bill which Ireland was told collect from Apple, those tax arrangements are driving tax revenue and spending increases in its budget for 2017.

Dropping the corporate tax rate is one of Trump's "highest priorities" as President, according to Moore, who said: "It's very difficult to get laws passed in America but this is a new administration, he has a mandate to do this from the voters."

Moore said if the US was to make the tax change, leaving its corporate tax rate at between 15 and 20 per cent, Ireland would be slightly more attractive, rather than significantly more attractive. "I think mostly the effect of our business tax reduction will be to keep companies home," he added.

As the bill goes through America's legislature “there will be compromises”, Moore said, before adding that "in the end I would put fairly high odds that we are going to get a corporate tax cut." ®

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