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ID number:102322
Published: 04.12.2006.
Language: English
Level: College/University
Literature: n/a
References: Not used
Table of contents
Nr. Chapter  Page.
  Introduction    3
  Rates of corporation tax    4
  Company residence    5
  “Relevant company”    6
  Cessation of residency    6
  Preliminary Corporation Tax    6
  What expenses can a company set against its profits?    7
  Payments and donations    8
  Losses    8
  The conditions to claim relief    9
  Close Companies    10

A focus of Ireland's strategy to attract investment is to create a favourable economic and fiscal environment which is supportive of industry.
Ireland offers one of the most beneficial corporate tax environments in the world.
A corporation tax rate of 12.5% applies to all corporate trading profits. The tax position of companies carrying out approved activities prior to 31 July 1998 will remain unchanged at 10% up until 2010.

Ireland’s economy has undergone a remarkable transformation over the past two decades. A recent New York Times op-ed by Thomas L. Friedman attributes Ireland’s economic growth in part to the country’s low corporate tax rate.
Ireland is currently the second richest country in the European Union, with a per capita GDP higher than that of Germany, France and Britain. But in the mid-1980s, the economy was faltering, college graduates were emigrating, and the outlook was bleak:
"We went on a borrowing, spending and taxing spree, and that nearly drove us under," said Deputy Prime Minister Mary Harney. "It was because we nearly went under that we got the courage to change."
This change included a corporate tax rate cut to 12.5 percent, far below the rest of Europe, which attracted foreign investment. Nine of ten of the world's top pharmaceutical companies and seven of the top ten software designers currently have operations in Ireland.
In 2001 the Tax Foundation hosted a delegation of congressional tax staff on a European tax conference that included a meeting with officials from Ireland’s Industrial Development Agency, who explained that the corporate tax rate cut had stimulated economic growth and new foreign investment. While some of Friedman’s suggestions are debatable (for example, that free college education is conducive to economic growth), he accurately describes two important aspects of the Irish transformation:
Make your corporate taxes low; simple and transparent; open your economy to competition … and you, too, can become one of the richest countries in Europe.

Rates of corporation tax
Corporation tax pays companies resident in the State, with some exceptions, and non-resident companies who trade through a branch or agency.
Corporation tax charged on all profits (income and gains), wherever arising, of the companies.
Until 1998 the standard rate of corporation tax in Ireland was 32%. Following the Irish Government's agreement with the EU for a general rate of 12.5% to apply from 1st January 2003, the rate to be applied to trading income fell in stages between 1999 and 2003:
• in the 1999 fiscal year the rate was 28%;
• in the 2000 fiscal year the rate was 24%;
• in the 2001 fiscal year the rate was 20%;
• in the 2002 fiscal year the rate was 16%;
• thereafter the rate has been 12.5%.
There are a number of special lower-tax regimes in Ireland, including the Shannon Free Zone, the International Financial Services Centre in Dublin, and the 'Manufacturing Rate of Corporation Tax, all of which have delivered a 10% rate of tax until varying dates between 2005 and 2010. Under the Irish Government's agreement with the EU that one rate of corporation tax of 12.5% will apply to all Irish companies from 1st January 2003, transitional arrangements apply to existing companies under the 10% regime.

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