Ireland as a tax haven

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Ireland summarises its taxation policy using the OECD's Hierarchy of Taxes pyramid, which emphasises high corporate tax rates as the types of tax most harmful to economic growth.
Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan (2011–2017), told an Irish MEP to "put on the green jersey" when told of a new tax scheme to replace the "Double Irish".[1]

Ireland has been labelled as a tax haven or corporate tax haven in multiple financial reports, an allegation which the state has rejected in response.[a][2] Ireland is on all academic "tax haven lists", including the § Leaders in tax haven research, and tax NGOs. Ireland does not meet the 1998 OECD definition of a tax haven,[3] but no OECD member, including Switzerland, ever met this definition; only Trinidad & Tobago met it in 2017.[4] Similarly, no EU–28 country is amongst the 64 listed in the 2017 EU tax haven blacklist and greylist.[5] In September 2016, Brazil became the first G20 country to "blacklist" Ireland as a tax haven.[6]

Ireland's base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) tools give some foreign corporates § Effective tax rates of 0% to 2.5%[b] on global profits re-routed to Ireland via their tax treaty network.[c][d] Ireland's aggregate § Effective tax rates for foreign corporates is 2.2–4.5%. Ireland's BEPS tools are the world's largest BEPS flows, exceed the entire Caribbean system, and artificially inflate the US–EU trade deficit.[8][9] Ireland's tax-free QIAIF & L–QIAIF regimes, and Section 110 SPVs, enable foreign investors to avoid Irish taxes on Irish assets, and can be combined with Irish BEPS tools to create confidential routes out of the Irish corporate tax system.[e] As these structures are OECD–whitelisted, Ireland's laws and regulations allow the use of data protection and data privacy provisions, and opt-outs from filing of public accounts, to obscure their effects. There is arguable evidence that Ireland acts as a § Captured state, fostering tax strategies.[11][12]

Ireland's situation is attributed to § Political compromises arising from the historical U.S. "worldwide" corporate tax system, which has made U.S. multinationals the largest users of tax havens, and BEPS tools, in the world.[f] The U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 ("TCJA"), and move to a hybrid "territorial" tax system,[g] removed the need for some of these compromises. In 2018, IP–heavy S&P500 multinationals guided similar post-TCJA effective tax rates, whether they are legally based in the U.S. (e.g. Pfizer[h]), or Ireland (e.g. Medtronic[h]). While TCJA neutralised some Irish BEPS tools, it enhanced others (e.g. Apple's "CAIA"[i]).[19] A reliance on U.S. corporates (80% of Irish corporation tax, 25% of Irish labour, 25 of top 50 Irish firms, and 57% of Irish value-add), is a concern in Ireland.[j]

Ireland's weakness in attracting corporates from "territorial" tax systems (Table 1),[k] was apparent in its failure to attract material financial services jobs moving due to Brexit (e.g. no US investment banks or material financial services franchise). Ireland's diversification into full tax haven tools[l] (e.g. QIAIF, L–QIAIF, and ICAV), has seen tax-law firms, and offshore magic circle firms, set up Irish offices to handle Brexit-driven tax restructuring. These tools made Ireland the world's 3rd largest Shadow Banking OFC,[24] and 5th largest Conduit OFC.[25][26]


Pierre Moscovici, EU Tax Commissioner said on the 24 January 2017, the EU did not consider Ireland a tax haven,[5] but on 18 January 2018 said that Ireland was a tax blackhole.[27]

Ireland has been associated with the term "tax haven" since the U.S. IRS produced a list on the 12 January 1981.[m][28] Ireland has been a consistent feature on almost every non-governmental tax haven list from Hines in February 1994,[29] to Zucman in June 2018[30] (and each one in-between). However, Ireland has never been considered a tax haven by either the OECD or the EU Commission.[3][5] These two contrasting facts are used by various sides, to allegedly prove or disprove that Ireland is a tax haven, and much of the detail in-between is discarded, some of which can explain the EU and OCED's position. Confusing scenarios have emerged, for example:

  • In April 2000, the FSFIMF listed Ireland as an offshore financial centre ("OFC"), based on criteria which academics and the OECD support.[31] The Irish State has never refuted the OFC label, and there are Irish State documents that note Ireland as an OFC. Yet, the terms OFC and "tax haven" are often considered synonymous.[32][33][34]
  • In December 2017, the EU did not consider Ireland to be a tax haven, and Ireland is not in the § EU 2017 tax haven lists; in January 2017 the EU Commissioner for Taxation, Pierre Moscovici, stated this publicly.[5] However, the same Commissioner in January 2018, described Ireland to the EU Parliament as a tax black hole.[27]
  • In September 2018, the 29th Chair of the U.S. President's Council of Economic Advisors, tax-expert Kevin Hassett, said that: "It’s not Ireland’s fault U.S. tax law was written by someone on acid". Hassett, however, had labelled Ireland as a tax haven in November 2017, when advocating for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 ("TCJA").[35]

The next sections chronicle the detail regarding Ireland's label as a tax haven (most cited Sources and Evidence), and detail regarding the Irish State's official Rebuttals of the label (both technical and non-technical). The final section chronicles the academic research on the drivers of U.S., EU, and OCED, decision making regarding Ireland.


Ireland has been labelled a tax haven, or a corporate tax haven (or Conduit OFC), by:

  1. The main § Leaders in tax haven research:[36][37] James R. Hines Jr. (1994, 2007, 2010),[29][38][39] Dhammika Dharmapala (2008 and 2009),[40][41] and Gabriel Zucman (2013, 2014 and 2018);[8][30][32][42][43]
  2. Other important § Leaders in tax haven research:[36][37] Joel Slemrod (2006),[44] and Mihir A. Desai (2006);[45]
  3. Notable academic studies by the University of Amsterdam's CORPNET in 2017 (Conduit and Sink OFCs)[25][26] and by the International Monetary Fund journal in 2018;[46]
  4. Various academic tax-policy centres in Germany,[47] the United Kingdom,[48] the United Nations,[49] and Ireland itself;[50]
  5. The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy[51][52] and Oxfam.[53][54] In 2021, the Tax Justice Network ranked Ireland 11th in its list of enablers of global corporate tax abuse after The British Virgin Islands, The Cayman Islands, Bermuda, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Hong Kong, Jersey, Singapore, and The United Arab Emirates.[55] The Tax Justice Network estimates that Ireland facilitates US$16bn in taxes lost each year by other countries.[56]
  6. The two U.S. Congressional investigations into global tax havens: 2008 by the Government Accountability Office,[57] and 2015 by the Congressional Research Service.[58]
  7. The 2013 Levin–McCain U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigation ("PSI") into tax avoidance activities of U.S. multinationals by using "profit shifting" BEPS tools;[59][60][61]
  8. The books on tax havens in the last decade, with at least 300 citations on Google Scholar: Tax Havens: How Globalization Really Works, by Ronen Palan and Richard Murphy from 2010,[34] Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and the Men Who Stole the World, by Nicholas Shaxson from 2011, and The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens, by Gabriel Zucman from 2015;
  9. The main financial media: New York Times,[62] Bloomberg News,[63] the Wall Street Journal,[64] Forbes,[65] the Financial Times,[66] The Economist,[67] the Washington Post,[68] and Fortune;[69]
  10. Some leading economists;[70][71][72][73][74]
  11. G20 economy, Brazil, who blacklisted Ireland in September 2016;[6][75] and potentially the U.S. State of Oregon whose State IRS recommended blacklisting Ireland in 2017.[76]
  12. The European Parliament in March 2019 voted to accept a report by 505 votes in favour to 63 against, recommending Ireland, as one several "EU tax havens", be included on the official EU Commission list of tax havens.[n][78][79][80]

Ireland has also been labelled related terms to being a tax haven:

  1. In Germany, the related term tax dumping has been used against Ireland by German political leaders;[81][82]
  2. The Financial Stability Forum ("FSF") and the International Monetary Fund ("IMF") listed Ireland as an offshore financial centre in June 2000;[31][32][33][34]
  3. Bloomberg, in an article on PwC Ireland's managing partner Feargal O'Rourke, used the term tax avoidance hub;[83]
  4. The 2013 U.S Senate PSI Levin–McCain investigation into U.S. multinational tax activity, called Ireland the holy grail of tax avoidance;[84][85]
  5. As the OECD has never listed any of its 35 members as tax havens, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland are called OECD tax havens;[86]
  6. As the EU Commission has never formally listed any of its 28 members as tax havens, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Belgium are called EU tax havens.[87][88]

The term tax haven has been used by the Irish mainstream media and leading Irish commentators.[89][90][91][92][68][93] Irish elected TDs have asked the question: "Is Ireland a tax haven?".[94][95] A search of Dáil Éireann debates lists 871 references to the term.[96] Some established Irish political parties accuse the Irish State of tax haven activities.[97][98][99]

The international community at this point is concerned about the nature of tax havens, and Ireland in particular is viewed with a considerable amount of suspicion in the international community for doing what is considered - at the very least - on the boundaries of acceptable practices.

— Ashoka Mody, Ex-IMF mission chief to Ireland, "Former IMF official warns Ireland to prepare for end to tax regime", 21 June 2018.[100]

OECD plans[edit]

While Ireland has been considered a tax haven by many for decades, the global tax system that Ireland depends on to incentivize multinational corporations to move there is receiving an overhaul by a coalition of 130 nations. This would cause changes to Ireland’s official corporate tax rate of 12.5%, and the associated rules sometimes described as helping companies based there avoid paying taxes to other countries where they make profits.[101] Originally Ireland was one of the few countries (one of nine) to oppose signing up for reform to a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15% and to force technology and retail companies to pay taxes based on where their goods and services were sold, rather than where the company was located. The Irish government would eventually agree to the terms of the deal after some debate. As of October 7, 2021 Ireland dropped its opposition too an overhaul of global corporate tax rules giving up its 12.5% tax rate.[102] The Irish Cabinet approved an increase from 12.5% to 15% in corporation tax for companies with turnover in excess of 750 million euros.[103] Additionally, the Irish Department of Finance has estimated that joining this global deal would reduce the country’s tax take by 2 billion euros ($2.3 billion) a year, according to RTE. The other countries party to this deal did have to agree to compromise on a few key issues involved in the reform, dropping the “at least” in the statement “minimum corporate tax rate of at least 15%” updating it to just 15% — signaling that the rate would not be pushed up at a later date. Ireland was also given assurances that it could keep the lower rate for smaller firms located in the country.


Global U.S. BEPS hub[edit]

Dominance of U.S. companies:[16] Irish corporate Gross Operating Surplus (i.e. profits), by the controlling country of the company (note: a material part of the Irish figure is also from U.S. tax inversions who are U.S.–controlled). Eurostat (2015).[104]

Ireland ranks in all non-political "tax haven lists" going back to the first lists in 1994,[m][28] and features in all "proxy tests" for tax havens and "quantitative measures" of tax havens. The level of base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) by U.S. multinationals in Ireland is so large,[8] that in 2017 the Central Bank of Ireland abandoned GDP/GNP as a statistic to replace it with Modified gross national income (GNI*).[105][106] Economists note that Ireland's distorted GDP is now distorting the EU's aggregate GDP,[107] and has artificially inflated the trade-deficit between the EU and the US.[108] (see Table 1).

Ireland's IP–based BEPS tools use "intellectual property" ("IP") to "shift profits" from higher-tax locations, with whom Ireland has bilateral tax treaties, back to Ireland.[d] Once in Ireland, these tools reduce Irish corporate taxes by re-routing to say Bermuda with the Double Irish BEPS tool (e.g. as Google and Facebook did), or to Malta with the Single Malt BEPS tool (e.g. as Microsoft and Allergan did), or by writing-off internally created virtual assets against Irish corporate tax with the Capital Allowances for Intangible Assets ("CAIA") BEPS tool (e.g. as Apple did post 2015). These BEPS tools give an Irish corporate effective tax rate (ETR) of 0–2.5%. They are the world's largest BEPS tools, and exceed the aggregate flows of the Caribbean tax system.[8][9][43][109][110]

Apple's Q1 2015 Irish restructuring, is the largest BEPS action in history, and led to the replacement of GDP by GNI*.
Setser & Frank (CoFR),[111]

Ireland has received the most U.S. corporate tax inversions of any global jurisdiction, or tax haven, since the first U.S. tax inversion in 1983.[112]

While IP–based BEPS tools are the majority of Irish BEPS flows, they were developed from Ireland's traditional expertise in inter-group contract manufacturing, or transfer pricing–based (TP) BEPS tools (e.g. capital allowance schemes, inter-group cross-border charging), which still provide material employment in Ireland (e.g. from U.S. life sciences firms[113]).[111][114][115] Some corporates like Apple maintain expensive Irish contract manufacturing TP–based BEPS operations (versus cheaper options in Asia, like Apple's Foxconn), to give "substance" to their larger Irish IP–based BEPS tools.[116][117]

By refusing to implement the 2013 EU Accounting Directive (and invoking exemptions on reporting holding company structures until 2022), Ireland enables their TP and IP–based BEPS tools to structure as "unlimited liability companies" ("ULC") which do not have to file public accounts with the Irish CRO.[118][119]

Ireland's Debt–based BEPS tools (e.g. the Section 110 SPV), have made Ireland the 3rd largest global Shadow Banking OFC,[24][120] and have been used by Russian banks to circumvent sanctions.[121][122][123] Irish Section 110 SPVs offer "orphaning" to protect the identity of the owner, and to shield the owner from Irish tax (the Section 110 SPV is an Irish company). They were used by U.S. distressed debt funds to avoid billions in Irish taxes,[124][125][126] assisted by Irish tax-law firms using in-house Irish children's charities to complete the orphan structure,[127][128][129] that enabled the U.S. distressed debt funds to export the gains on their Irish assets, free of any Irish taxes or duties, to Luxembourg and the Caribbean (see Section 110 abuse).[130][131]

Unlike the TP and IP–based BEPS tools, Section 110 SPVs must file public accounts with the Irish CRO, which was how the above abuses were discovered in 2016–17. In February 2018 the Central Bank of Ireland upgraded the little-used L–QIAIF regime to give the same tax benefits as Section 110 SPVs but without having to file public accounts. In June 2018, the Central Bank reported that €55 billion of U.S.–owned distressed Irish assets, equivalent to 25% of Irish GNI*, moved out of Irish Section 110 SPVs and into L–QIAIFs.[132][133][134]

Green Jersey BEPS tool[edit]

Profitability of U.S. subsidiaries (2015 BEA data).[30][135]
U.S. multinationals book over half of their non–U.S. profits in tax havens by using BEPS tools (2016 BEA).[13][16]

Apple's Q1 2015 Irish restructure, post their €13 billion EU tax fine for 2004–2014, is one of the most advanced OECD-compliant BEPS tools in the world. It integrates Irish IP–based BEPS tools, and Jersey Debt–based BEPS tools, to materially amplify the tax sheltering effects, by a factor of circa 2.[136] Apple Ireland bought circa $300 billion of a "virtual" IP–asset from Apple Jersey in Q1 2015 (see leprechaun economics).[111][137] The Irish "capital allowances for intangible assets" ("CAIA") BEPS tool allows Apple Ireland to write-off this virtual IP–asset against future Irish corporation tax. The €26.220 billion jump in intangible capital allowances claimed in 2015,[138] showed Apple Ireland is writing-off this IP–asset over a 10–year period. In addition, Apple Jersey gave Apple Ireland the $300 billion "virtual" loan to buy this virtual IP–asset from Apple Jersey.[136] Thus, Apple Ireland can claim additional Irish corporation tax relief on this loan interest, which is circa $20 billion per annum (Apple Jersey pays no tax on the loan interest it receives from Apple Ireland). These tools, created entirely from virtual internal assets financed by virtual internal loans, give Apple circa €45 billion per annum in relief against Irish corporation tax.[137] In June 2018 it was shown that Microsoft is preparing to copy this Apple scheme,[139] known as "the Green Jersey".[136][137]

As the IP is a virtual internal asset, it can be replenished with each technology (or life sciences) product cycle (e.g. new virtual IP assets created offshore and then bought by the Irish subsidiary, with internal virtual loans, for higher prices). The Green Jersey thus gives a perpetual BEPS tool, like the double Irish, but at a much greater scale than the double Irish, as the full BEPS effect is capitalised on day one.

Experts expect the U.S Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 ("TCJA") GILTI-regime to neutralise some Irish BEPS tools, including the single malt and the double Irish.[140] Because Irish intangible capital allowances are accepted as U.S. GILTI deductions,[141] the "Green Jersey" now enables U.S. multinationals to achieve net effective U.S. corporate tax rates of 0% to 2.5% via TCJA's participation relief.[17] As Microsoft's main Irish BEPS tools are the single malt and the double Irish, in June 2018, Microsoft was preparing a "Green Jersey" Irish BEPS scheme.[139] Irish experts, including Seamus Coffey, Chairman of the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council and author of the Irish State's 2017 Review of Ireland's Corporation Tax Code,[142][143] expects a boom in U.S. on-shoring of virtual internal IP assets to Ireland, via the Green Jersey BEPS tool (e.g. under the capital allowances for intangible assets scheme).[144]

Domestic tax tools[edit]

Ireland's Qualifying Investor Alternative Investment Fund ("QIAIF") regime is a range of five tax-free legal wrappers (ICAV, Investment Company, Unit Trust, Common Contractual Fund, Investment Limited Partnership).[145][146] Four of the five wrappers do not file public accounts with the Irish CRO, and therefore offer tax confidentiality and tax secrecy.[147][148] While they are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland, like the Section 110 SPV, it has been shown many are effectively unregulated "brass plate" entities.[123][149][150][151][152] The Central Bank has no mandate to investigate tax avoidance or tax evasion, and under the 1942 Central Bank Secrecy Act, the Central Bank of Ireland cannot send the confidential information which QIAIFs must file with the Bank to the Irish Revenue.[153]

QIAIFs have been used in tax avoidance on Irish assets,[154][155][156][157] on circumventing international regulations,[158] on avoiding tax laws in the EU and the U.S.[159][160] QIAIFs can be combined with Irish corporate BEPS tools (e.g. the Orphaned Super–QIF), to create routes out of the Irish corporate tax system to Luxembourg,[10] the main Sink OFC for Ireland.[161][162][163] It is asserted that a material amount of assets in Irish QIAIFs, and the ICAV wrapper in particular, are Irish assets being shielded from Irish taxation.[164][165] Offshore magic circle law firms (e.g. Walkers and Maples and Calder, who have set up offices in Ireland), market the Irish ICAV as a superior wrapper to the Cayman SPC (Maples and Calder claim to be a major architect of the ICAV),[166][167][168] and there are explicit QIAIF rules to help with re-domiciling of Cayman/BVI funds into Irish ICAVs.[169]

Captured state[edit]

Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny (l) PwC (Ireland) Managing Partner Feargal O'Rourke (r), architect of the double Irish BEPS tool.[170]

There is evidence Ireland meets the captured state criteria for tax havens.[11][12][150][171] When the EU investigated Apple in Ireland in 2016 they found private tax rulings from the Irish Revenue giving Apple a tax rate of 0.005% on over EUR€110 billion of cumulative Irish profits from 2004 to 2014.[172][173][174]

When the Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan was alerted by an Irish MEP in 2016 to a new Irish BEPS tool to replace the Double Irish (called the Single Malt), he was told to "put on the green jersey".[1] When Apple executed the largest BEPS transaction in history in Q1 2015, the Central Statistics Office suppressed data to hide Apple's identity.[175][176]

Noonan changed the capital allowances for intangible assets scheme rules, the IP–based BEPS tool Apple used in Q1 2015, to reduce Apple's effective tax rate from 2.5% to 0%.[177] When it was discovered in 2016 that U.S. distressed debt funds abused Section 110 SPVs to shield €80 billion in Irish loan balances from Irish taxes, the Irish State did not investigate or prosecute (see Section 110 abuse). In February 2018, the Central Bank of Ireland, which regulates Section 110 SPVs, upgraded the little used tax-free L-QIAIF regime, which has stronger privacy from public scrutiny.[133][178] In June 2018, U.S. distressed debt funds transferred €55 billion of Irish assets (or 25% of Irish GNI*), out of Section 110 SPVs and into L–QIAIFs.[132][133]

The June 2017 OECD Anti-BEPS MLI was signed by 70 jurisdictions.[179] The corporate tax havens, including Ireland, opted out of the key Article 12.[180]

Global legal firm Baker McKenzie,[181] representing a coalition of 24 multinational U.S. software firms, including Microsoft, lobbied Michael Noonan, as [Irish] minister for finance, to resist the [OECD MLI] proposals in January 2017. In a letter to him the group recommended Ireland not adopt article 12, as the changes "will have effects lasting decades" and could "hamper global investment and growth due to uncertainty around taxation". The letter said that "keeping the current standard will make Ireland a more attractive location for a regional headquarters by reducing the level of uncertainty in the tax relationship with Ireland's trading partners".

— Irish Times. "Ireland resists closing corporation tax 'loophole'", 10 November 2017.[180]
Central Bank of Ireland ("CBI") regulates QIAIFs. When Irish public tax scandals concerning the Section 110 SPV, also regulated by the CBI, emerged in 2016, the CBI upgraded the little–used LQIAIF,[178] to give the same benefits as Section 110 SPVs, but with confidentiality and tax secrecy.[132]

Tax haven investigator Nicholas Shaxson documented how Ireland's captured state uses a complex and "siloed" network of Irish privacy and data protection laws to navigate around the fact that its tax tools are OECD–whitelisted,[182][183] and therefore must be transparent to some State entity.[11] For example, Irish tax-free QIAIFs (and L–QIAIFs) are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and must provide the Bank with details of their financials. However, the 1942 Central Bank Secrecy Act prevents the Central Bank from sending this data to the Revenue Commissioners.[153] Similarly, the Central Statistics Office (Ireland) stated it had to restrict its public data release in 2016–17 to protect the Apple's identity during its 2015 BEPS action, because the 1993 Central Statistics Act prohibits use of economic data for revealing such activities.[184] When the EU Commission fined Apple €13 billion for illegal State aid in 2016, there were no official records of any discussion of the tax deal given to Apple outside of the Irish Revenue Commissioners as such data is also protected.[185]

When Tim Cook stated in 2016 that Apple was the largest tax-payer in Ireland, the Irish Revenue Commissioners quoted Section 815A of the 1997 Tax Acts that prevents them disclosing such information, even to members of Dáil Éireann, or the Irish Department of Finance (despite the fact that Apple is circa one-fifth of Ireland's GDP).[186]

Commentators note the plausible deniability provided by Irish privacy and data protection laws, that enable the State to function as a tax haven while maintaining OECD compliance. They ensure the State entity regulating each tax tool are "siloed" from the Irish Revenue, and public scrutiny via FOI laws.[11][187][188]

In February 2019, The Guardian reported on leaked Facebook internal reports revealing the influence Facebook had on the Irish State, to which Cambridge University academic John Naughton stated: "the leak was “explosive” in the way it revealed the “vassalage” of the Irish state to the big tech companies".[189] In April 2019, Politico reported on concerns that Ireland was protecting Facebook and Google from the new EU GDPR regulations, stating: "Despite its vows to beef up its threadbare regulatory apparatus, Ireland has a long history of catering to the very companies it is supposed to oversee, having wooed top Silicon Valley firms to the Emerald Isle with promises of low taxes, open access to top officials, and help securing funds to build glittering new headquarters."[190]


Effective tax rates[edit]

The Irish State refutes tax haven labels as unfair criticism of its low, but legitimate, 12.5% Irish corporate tax rate,[191][192] which it defends as being the effective tax rate ("ETR").[193] Independent studies show that Ireland's aggregate effective corporate tax rate is between 2.2% to 4.5% (depending on assumptions made).[194][109][195][196] This lower aggregate effective tax rate is consistent with the individual effective tax rates of U.S. multinationals in Ireland (U.S.–controlled multinationals are 14 of Ireland's largest 20 companies, and Apple alone is over one-fifth of Irish GDP; see "low tax economy"),[50][197][198][199][200] as well as the IP–based BEPS tools openly marketed by the main tax-law firms in the Irish International Financial Services Centre with ETRs of 0–2.5% (see "effective tax rate").[201][202][203][204]

EU Commission's outline of Apple's hybrid–double Irish BEPS tax structure in Ireland, that used two branches inside a single company based on private rulings from the Irish Revenue Commissioners in 1991 and 2007.[205]
Margrethe Vestager European Commissioner for Competition who led case SA:38373 on illegal State aid to Apple in Ireland (2004–2014).[205]

Two of the world's main § Leaders in tax haven research, estimated Ireland's effective corporate tax rate to be 4%: James R. Hines Jr. in his 1994 Hines–Rice paper on tax havens, estimated Ireland's effective corporate rate was 4% (Appendix 4);[29] Gabriel Zucman, 24 years later, in his June 2018 paper on corporate tax havens, also estimated Ireland's effective corporate tax to be 4% (Appendix 1).[109]

The disconnect between the ETR of 12.5% claimed by the Irish State and its advisors, and the actual ETRs of 2.2–4.5% calculated by independent experts, is because the Irish tax code considers a high percentage of Irish income as not being subject to Irish taxation, due to various exclusions and deductions. The gap of 12.5% vs. 2.2–4.5% implies that well over two-thirds of corporate profits booked in Ireland are excluded from Irish corporate taxation (see Irish ETR).

This selective treatment allowed Apple to pay an effective corporate tax rate of 1 per cent on its European profits in 2003 down to 0.005 per cent in 2014.

Applying a 12.5% rate in a tax code that shields most corporate profits from taxation, is indistinguishable from applying a near 0% rate in a normal tax code.

— Jonathan Weil, Bloomberg View (11 February 2014)[63]

The Irish State does not refer to QIAIFs (or L–QIAIFs), or Section 110 SPVs, which allow non-resident investors to hold Irish assets indefinitely without incurring Irish taxes, VAT or duties (e.g. permanent "base erosion" to the Irish exchequer as QIAIF units and SPV shares can be traded), and which can be combined with Irish BEPS tools to avoid all Irish corporate taxation (see § Domestic tax tools).

Salary taxes, VAT, and CGT for Irish residents are in line with rates of other EU–28 countries, and tend to be slightly higher than EU–28 averages in many cases. Because of this, Ireland has a special lower salary tax rate scheme, and other tax bonuses, for employees of foreign multinationals earning over €75,000 ("SARP").[206]

The OECD's "Hierarchy of Taxes" pyramid (from the Department of Finance Tax Strategy Group's 2011 tax policy document) summarises Ireland's tax strategy.[207]

OECD 1998 definition[edit]

EU and U.S. studies that attempted to find a consensus on the definition of a tax haven, have concluded that there is no consensus (see tax haven definitions).[208]

The Irish State, and its advisors, have refuted the tax haven label by invoking the 1998 OCED definition of a "tax haven" as the consensus definition:[209][210][211][212]

  1. No or nominal tax on the relevant income;
  2. Lack of effective exchange of information; (with OECD)
  3. Lack of transparency; (with OECD)
  4. No substantial activities (e.g. tolerance of brass plate companies).

Most Irish BEPS tools and QIAIFs are OECD–whitelisted (and can thus avail of Ireland's 70 bilateral tax treaties),[182][183] and therefore while Ireland could meet the first OECD test, it fails the second and third OECD tests.[3] The fourth OECD test (‡) was withdrawn by the OECD in 2002 on protest from the U.S., which indicates is a political dimension to the definition.[31][213] In 2017, only one jurisdiction, Trinidad & Tobago, met the 1998 OECD definition of a tax haven (Trinidad & Tobago is not one of the 35 OECD member countries), and the definition has fallen into disrepute.[4][214][215]

Tax haven academic James R. Hines Jr. notes that OECD tax haven lists never include the 35 OECD member countries (Ireland is a founding OECD member).[39] The OECD definition was produced in 1998 as part of the OECD's investigation into Harmful Tax Competition: An Emerging Global Issue.[216] By 2000, when the OECD published their first list of 35 tax havens,[217] it included no OECD member countries as they were now all considered to have engaged in the OECD's Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (see § External links). Because the OECD has never listed any of its 35 members as tax havens, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland are sometimes referred to as the "OECD tax havens".[86]

Subsequent definitions of tax haven, and/or offshore financial centre/corporate tax haven (see definition of a "tax haven"), focus on effective taxes as the primary requirement, which Ireland would meet, and have entered the general lexicon.[218][219][220] The Tax Justice Network, who places Ireland on its tax haven list,[31] split the concept of tax rates from tax transparency by defining a secrecy jurisdiction and creating the Financial Secrecy Index. The OECD has never updated or amended its 1998 definition (apart from dropping the 4th criteria). The Tax Justice Network imply the U.S. may be the reason.[221]

EU 2017 tax haven lists[edit]

While by 2017, the OECD only considered Trinidad and Tobago to be a tax haven,[3] in 2017 the EU produced a list of 17 tax havens, plus another 47 jurisdictions on the "grey list",[222] however, as with the OECD lists above, the EU list did not include any EU-28 jurisdictions.[223] Only one of the EU's 17 blacklisted tax havens, namely Samoa, appeared in the July 2017 Top 20 tax havens list from CORPNET.

The EU Commission was criticised for not including Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Malta and Cyprus,[224][225] and Pierre Moscovici, explicitly stated to an Irish State Oireachtas Finance Committee on 24 January 2017: Ireland is not a tax haven,[5] although he subsequently called Ireland and the Netherlands "tax black holes" on 18 January 2018.[27][226]

On 27 March 2019, RTÉ News reported that the European Parliament had "overwhelmingly accepted" a new report that likened Ireland to a tax haven.[227]

Hines–Rice 1994 definition[edit]

The first major § Leaders in tax haven research was James R. Hines Jr., who in 1994, published a paper with Eric M Rice, listing 41 tax havens, of which Ireland was one of their major 7 tax havens.[29] The 1994 Hines–Rice paper is recognised as the first important paper on tax havens,[36] and is the most cited paper in the history of research on tax havens.[37] The paper has been cited by all subsequent, most cited, research papers on tax havens, by other § Leaders in tax haven research, including Desai,[228] Dharmapala,[41] Slemrod,[44] and Zucman.[30][229] Hines expanded his original 1994 list to 45 countries in 2007,[38] and to 52 countries in the Hines 2010 list,[39] and used quantitative techniques to estimate that Ireland was the third largest global tax haven. Other major papers on tax havens by Dharmapala (2008, 2009),[41] and Zucman (2015, 2018),[30] cite the 1994 Hines–Rice paper, but create their own tax haven lists, all of which include Ireland (e.g., the June 2018, Zucman–Tørsløv–Wier 2018 list).

The 1994 Hines–Rice paper was one of the first to use the term "profit shifting".[230] Hines–Rice also introduced the first quantitative tests of a tax haven, which Hines felt were needed as many tax havens had non-trivial "headline" tax rates.[231] These two tests are still the most widely quoted proxy tests for tax havens in the academic literature. The first test, extreme distortion of national accounts by BEPS accounting flows, was used by the IMF in June 2000 when defining offshore financial centres ("OFCs"), a term the IMF used to capture both traditional tax havens and emerging modern corporate tax havens:[31][32][33][34]

  1. Distortion of GDP/GNP. BEPS flows inflate the haven's GDP; proxies are GDP-per-capita (Ireland is 3rd), and deviation of GDP/GNI from 1 (Ireland is now 1st).[232]
  2. Hyper–profitability of foreign multinationals. Profit shifting inflates profitability in the tax haven; the proxy is the GAAP profits of foreign companies.[233]

The Hines–Rice paper showed that low foreign tax rates [from tax havens] ultimately enhance U.S. tax collections.[234] Hines' insight that the U.S. is the largest beneficiary from tax havens was confirmed by others,[15] and dictated U.S. policy towards tax havens, including the 1996 "check-the-box"[o] rules, and U.S. hostility to OECD attempts in curbing Ireland's BEPS tools.[p][213] Under the 2017 U.S. TCJA, U.S. multinationals paid a 15.5% repatriation tax on the circa $1 trillion in untaxed cash built up in global tax havens from 2004 to 2017.[q] Had these U.S. multinationals paid foreign taxes, they would have built up sufficient foreign tax credits to avoid paying U.S. taxes. By allowing U.S. multinationals to use global tax havens, the U.S. exchequer received more taxes, at the expense of other countries, as Hines predicted in 1994.

Several of Hines' papers on tax havens, including the calculations of the Hines–Rice 1994 paper, were used in the final report by the U.S. President's Council of Economic Advisors that justified the U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the largest U.S. tax reform in a generation.[235]

The Irish State dismisses academic studies which list Ireland as a tax haven as being "out-of-date", because they cite the 1994 Hines–Rice paper.[236][237] The Irish State ignores the fact that both Hines, and all the other academics, developed new lists; or that the Hines–Rice 1994 paper is still considered correct (e.g. per the 2017 U.S. TCJA legislation).[235] In 2013, the Department of Finance (Ireland) co-wrote a paper with the Irish Revenue Commissioners, which they had published in the State-sponsored ESRI Quarterly, which found the only sources listing Ireland as a tax haven were:[210][r]

  1. "First, because of Ireland's 12.5 percent corporation tax rate"; (see § Effective tax rates)
  2. "Second, the role of the International Financial Services Centre in attracting investment to Ireland" (this is effectively also linked to § Effective tax rates);
  3. "Third, because of a rather obscure, but nonetheless influential paper by Hines and Rice dating back to 1994."

This 2013 Irish State-written paper then invoked the § OECD 1998 definition of a tax haven, four years younger than Hines–Rice, and since discredited, to show that Ireland was not a tax haven.[210]

The following is from a June 2018 Irish Independent article by the CEO of the key trade body that represents all U.S. multinationals in Ireland on the 1994 Hines–Rice paper:

However, it looks like the 'tax haven' narrative will always be with us - and typically that narrative is based on studies and data of 20 to 30 years' vintage or even older. It's a bit like calling out Ireland today for being homophobic because up to 1993 same-sex activity was criminalised and ignoring the joyous day in May 2015 when Ireland became the first country in the world to introduce marriage equality by popular vote.

— Mark Redmond, President American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland, 21 June 2018[238][239]

Unique talent base[edit]

Long Room, Trinity College Dublin ("TCD"). In 2018, TCD lost its place as Ireland's only university in the world's top 100 ranking, falling to 104,[240] but by 2019 had fallen to 120.[241]

In a less technical manner to the rebuttals by the Irish State, the labels have also drawn responses from leaders in the Irish business community who attribute the value of U.S. investment in Ireland to Ireland's unique talent base. At €334 billion, the value of U.S. investment in Ireland is larger than Ireland's 2016 GDP of €291 billion (or 2016 GNI* of €190 billion), and larger than total aggregate U.S. investment into all BRIC countries.[238] This unique talent base is also noted by IDA Ireland, the State body responsible for attracting inward investment, but never defined beyond the broad concept.[242]

Arts Block, University College Dublin ("UCD"). In 2018, UCD was Ireland's second-ranked university at 193 in the world ranking list,[240] but in 2019 fell to the 201–250 group.[241]

Irish education does not appear to be distinctive.[243] Ireland has a high % of third-level graduates, but this is because it re-classified many technical colleges into degree-issuing institutions in 2005–08. This is believed to have contributed to the decline of its leading universities, of which there are two in the top 200 (i.e. a quality over quantity issue).[240][244][245] Ireland continues to pursue this strategy and is considering re-classifying the remaining Irish technical institutes as universities for 2019.[246]

Ireland shows no apparent distinctiveness in any non-tax related metrics of business competitiveness including cost of living,[247][248][249] league tables of favoured EU FDI locations,[250] league tables of favoured EU destinations for London-based financials post-Brexit (which are linked to quality of talent),[251] and the key World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report rankings.[252]

Without its low-tax regime, Ireland will find it hard to sustain economic momentum

— Ashoka Mody, Ex–IMF mission chief to Ireland, "Warning Ireland faces economic threat over corporate tax reliance – Troika chief", 9 June 2018.[253]

Irish commentators provide a perspective on Ireland's "talent base". The State applies an "employment tax"[s] to U.S. multinationals using Irish BEPs tools. To fulfil their Irish employment quotas, some U.S. technology firms perform low-grade localisation functions in Ireland which requires foreign employees speaking global languages (while many U.S. multinationals perform higher-value software engineering functions in Ireland, some do not[117][257]). These employees must be sourced internationally. This is facilitated via a loose Irish work-visa programme.[258] This Irish "employment tax" requirement for use of BEPS tools, and its fulfilment via foreign work-visas, is a driver of Dublin's housing crisis.[259] This is consistent with a bias to property development-led economic growth, favoured by the main Irish political parties (see Abuse of QIAIFs).[260]

Global "knowledge hub" for "selling into Europe"[edit]

Only U.S. multinationals use Ireland:[16] Irish corporate gross operating surplus by the controlling country of the company (note: a material part of the Irish figure are from U.S. tax inversions who are also U.S.–controlled companies). Eurostat (2015)
U.S. multinationals book over half of their non–U.S. profits in tax havens by using BEPS tools (2016 BEA).[13][16]

In another less technical rebuttal, the State explains Ireland's high ranking in the established "proxy tests" for tax havens as a by–product of Ireland's position as preferred hub for global "knowledge economy" multinationals (e.g. technology and life sciences), "selling into EU–28 markets".[261] When the Central Statistics Office (Ireland) suppressed its 2016–2017 data release to protect Apple's Q1 2015 BEPS action, it released a paper on "meeting the challenges of a modern globalised knowledge economy".[262]

Ireland has no foreign corporates that are non–U.S./non–UK in its top 50 companies by revenue, and only one by employees (German Lidl, which sells into Ireland).[20] The UK multinationals in Ireland are either selling into Ireland (e.g. Tesco), or date pre–2009, after which the UK overhauled its tax system to a "territorial tax" model. Since 2009, the U.K has become a major tax haven (see U.K. transformation).[21][22] Since this transformation, no major UK firms have moved to Ireland and most UK corporate tax inversions to Ireland returned;[23] although Ireland has succeeded in attracting some financial services firms affected by Brexit.[263][264]

In 2016, U.S. corporate tax expert, James R. Hines Jr., showed multinationals from "territorial" corporate taxation systems don't need tax havens, when researching behaviours of German multinationals with German academic tax experts.[265]

U.S.–controlled multinationals constitute 25 of the top 50 Irish firms (including tax inversions), and 70% of top 50 revenue (see Table 1). U.S.–controlled multinations pay 80% of Irish corporate taxes (see "low tax economy"). Irish–based U.S. multinationals may be selling into Europe, however, the evidence is that they route all non–U.S. business through Ireland.[c][269][270] Ireland is more accurately described as a "U.S. corporate tax haven".[271] The U.S. multinationals in Ireland are from "knowledge industries" (see Table 1). This is because Ireland's BEPS tools (e.g. the double Irish, the single malt and the capital allowances for intangible assets) require intellectual property ("IP") to execute the BEPS actions, which technology and life sciences possess in quantity (see IP–Based BEPS tools).[272]

Intellectual property (IP) has become the leading tax-avoidance vehicle.

— UCLA Law Review, "Intellectual Property Law Solutions to Tax Avoidance", (2015)[273]

Rather than a "global knowledge hub" for "selling into Europe", it might be suggested that Ireland is a base for U.S. multinationals with sufficient IP to use Ireland's BEPS tools to shield non–U.S. revenues from U.S. taxation.[16]

No other non-haven OECD country records as high a share of foreign profits booked in tax havens[t] as the United States. [...] This suggests that half of all the global profits shifted to tax havens are shifted by U.S. multinationals. By contrast, about 25% accrues to E.U. countries, 10% to the rest of the OECD, and 15% to developing countries (Tørsløv et al., 2018).

— Gabriel Zucman, Thomas Wright, "THE EXORBITANT TAX PRIVILEGE", NBER Working Papers (September 2018).[13]

In 2018, the U.S. converted into a hybrid "territorial" tax system (the U.S. was one of the last remaining pure "worldwide" tax systems).[17] Post this conversion, U.S. effective tax rates for IP–heavy U.S. multinationals are very similar to the effective tax rates they would incur if legally headquartered in Ireland, even net of full Irish BEPS tools like the double Irish. This represents a substantive challenge to the Irish economy (see effect of U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act).[274][275] However, § Technical issues with TCJA mean some Irish BEPS tools, such as Apple's § Green Jersey, have been enhanced.

Ireland's recent expansion into traditional tax haven services (e.g. Cayman Island and Luxembourg type ICAVs and L–QIAIFs) is a diversifier from U.S. corporate tax haven services.[276] Brexit was initially disappointing for Ireland in the area of attracting financial services firms from London, but the situation later improved. Brexit has led to growth in UK centric tax-law firms (including offshore magic circle firms), setting up offices in Ireland to handle traditional tax haven services for clients.[277]



Apparent contradictions[edit]

While Ireland's development into traditional tax haven tools (e.g. ICAVs and L–QIAIFs) is more recent, Ireland's status as a corporate tax haven has been noted since 1994 (the first Hines–Rice tax haven paper),[29] and discussed in the U.S. Congress for a decade.[57] A lack of progress, and delays, in addressing Ireland's corporate tax BEPS tools is apparent:

  1. Ireland's most famous BEPS tool, the double Irish, attributed to creating the largest build-up in untaxed cash in history, was documented in 2004.[278] The U.S. did not seek its closure, and it was the EU that forced Ireland to close the double Irish BEPS tool in October 2014;[279] however, existing users such as Google and Facebook, were given a five–year delay to January 2020 before closure.[280]
  2. Ireland's replacement for the double Irish tool, the single malt, was already up and running in 2014 (and used by Microsoft and Allergan in 2017),[281][282] and has as yet not received any US–EU–OECD attention. It is noted that since the closure of the double Irish in 2015, the use of Irish BEPS tools increased materially;[283][284]
  3. The OECD, who is running a project since 2012 to stop global BEPS activities,[285] has made no comment on Apple's Q1 2015 USD 300 billion Irish BEPS transaction, the largest BEPS transaction in history (labelled "leprechaun economics" by Nobel Prize economist, Paul Krugman), with Ireland's expanded capital allowances for intangible assets ("CAIA") BEPS tool (the "Green Jersey");
  4. The U.S. administration condemned Apple's Irish tax structures in the 2013 Levin–McCain PSI,[59][60][61] however, it came to Apple's defense when the EU Commission levied a €13 billion fine on Apple for Irish tax avoidance from 2004 to 2014, the largest corporate tax fine in history, arguing that Apple paying the full 12.5% Irish corporate tax rate would harm the U.S. exchequer;[286]
  5. Germany has condemned Ireland for its tax tools,[81] however, Germany blocked the EU Commission's push for country-by-country reporting ("CbCr") which would effectively end EU tax havens,[287] and the German administration neutralised its own Parliament's 2018 "Royalty Barrier" by exempting all OECD–approved IP–schemes (i.e. all of Ireland's BEPS tools), see German Lizenzschranke;[288]
  6. Tax haven economist, Gabriel Zucman, showed in 2018 that most corporate tax disputes are between high-tax jurisdictions, and not between high-tax and low-tax corporate tax haven jurisdictions. In fact, Zucman's (et alia) analysis shows that disputes with the major corporate tax havens of Ireland, Luxembourg and the Netherlands, are rare.[30][289]

    Global Tax Plans

    While Ireland has been considered a tax haven by many for decades now, the global tax system that Ireland depends on to incentivize multinational corporations to move there is receiving an overhaul by a coalition of 130 nations. Previously this global tax system did not do much to limit tax dodging by multinational firms, with Ireland’s official corporate tax rate until this rework being at a mere 12.5% alongside a tax regime meant to help global companies based there avoid paying taxes to other countries where they make profits.[290] Originally Ireland was one of the few countries (one out of nine) to oppose the sign on for reform to a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15% and to force technology and retail companies to pay taxes based on where their goods and services were sold, rather than where the company was located. There was obvious hesitation for Irish officials to raise their tax rates while they enjoyed their status of being a tax haven and attracted the business multinational corporations throughout the world, the Irish government would eventually agree to the terms of the deal after some time and debate. As of October 7, 2021 Ireland dropped its opposition too an overhaul of global corporate tax rules giving up its 12.5% tax rate.[291] The Irish Cabinet approved an increase from 12.5% to 15% in corporation tax for companies with turnover in excess of 750 million euros.[292] Additionally, the Irish Department of Finance has estimated that joining this global deal would reduce the country’s tax take by 2 billion euros ($2.3 billion) a year, according to RTE. The other countries apart of this deal did have to agree to compromise on a few key issues involved in the reform, dropping the “at least” in the statement “minimum corporate tax rate of at least 15%” updating it to just 15% — signaling that the rate would not be pushed up at a later date. Ireland was also given assurances that it could keep the lower rate for smaller firms located in the country.

Source of contradictions[edit]

Tax haven experts explain these contradictions as resulting from the different agendas of the major OECD taxing authorities, and particularly the U.S.,[13] and Germany, who while not themselves considered tax havens or corporate tax havens, rank #2 and #7 respectively in the 2018 Financial Secrecy Index of tax secrecy jurisdictions:[135][293][294][295]

  1. U.S. Perspective I. Pre the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 ("TCJA"), the U.S. had one of the highest global rates of corporation tax at 35%.[296] Allowing U.S. multinationals to "check-the-box"[o][297] The aggregate worldwide tax rates of U.S. multinationals is far lower than 35%. This compromise was not unanimously supported in Washington and some U.S. multinationals still inverted to Ireland.[112] Tax academics have labelled Washington's concession to U.S. multinationals as the exorbitant tax privilege (and link it to the wider economic concept of U.S. exorbitant privilege).[13]
  2. U.S. Perspective II. If the U.S. forced U.S. multinationals not to use tax havens, then U.S. multinationals would be forced to pay higher taxes in the global jurisdictions in which they operate. As first shown in the 1994 Hines–Rice paper, the U.S. has long been aware that by allowing U.S. multinationals to use BEPS tools from global corporate tax havens, increases the ultimate taxes received by the U.S. exchequer.[14][15] The 2017 TCJA U.S. repatriation tax of 15.5% would not have been payable had U.S. multinationals been paying full foreign taxes on their non–U.S. income.[298]
  3. EU Perspective I. The EU is the world's largest net exporting block. Many EU countries therefore also rely on IP–based BEPS tools to re-charge gross profits from global sales of automobiles, chemicals, and other exports, back to the EU. Because most EU countries run a "territorial" tax system, which allows lower tax rates for foreign sourced income, EU multinationals do not need to use Irish BEPS tools as the U.S. multinationals do;[299] Tax haven expert, James R. Hines Jr., saw this when researching why German multinationals make so little use of tax havens in 2016.[265]
  4. EU Perspective II. A second noted EU perspective is that if U.S. multinationals need Ireland as a BEPS hub because the pre–TCJA U.S. "worldwide" tax system did not enable them to charge IP direct from the U.S. (without incurring larger U.S. taxes), then the money Ireland extracts from these U.S. multinationals (e.g. some Irish corporate taxes and Irish salaries), are still a net positive for the aggregate EU–28 economy. Ireland and other so-called "EU tax havens", can extract EU "rents" from U.S. multinationals, which EU multinationals don't have to pay.

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act[edit]


OECD "worldwide tax" countries.[300]

Before the passing of the TCJA in December 2017, the U.S. was one of eight remaining jurisdictions to run a "worldwide" taxation system, which was the principal obstacle to U.S. corporate tax reform, as it was not possible to differentiate between the source of income.[u] The seven other "worldwide" tax systems, are: Chile, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Korea, Mexico, and Poland.[301]

Tax experts expect the anti-BEPS provisions of the TCJA's new hybrid "territorial" taxation system, the GILTI and BEAT tax regimes, to neutralize some Irish BEPS tools (e.g. the double Irish and the single malt). In addition, the TCJA's FDII tax regime makes U.S.–controlled multinationals indifferent as to whether they charge-out their IP from the U.S. or from Ireland, as net effective tax rates on IP, under the FDII and GILTI regimes, are very similar. Post-TCJA, S&P500 IP–heavy U.S.–controlled multinationals, have guided 2019 tax rates that are similar, whether legally headquartered in Ireland or the U.S.[h][18][304]

Tax academic, Mihir A. Desai, in a post-TCJA interview in the Harvard Business Review said that: "So, if you think about a lot of technology companies that are housed in Ireland and have massive operations there, they’re not going to maybe need those in the same way, and those can be relocated back to the U.S.[305]

It is expected Washington will be less accommodating to U.S. multinationals using Irish BEPS tools and locating IP in tax havens.[276] The EU Commission has also become less tolerant of U.S. multinational use of Irish BEPS tools, as evidenced by the €13 billion fine on Apple for Irish tax avoidance from 2004 to 2014. There is widespread unhappiness of Irish BEPS tools in Europe, even from other tax havens.[306]

"Now that [U.S.] corporate tax reform has passed, the advantages of being an inverted company are less obvious"

— Jami Rubin, Managing Director and Head of Life Sciences Research Group, Goldman Sachs (March 2018).[18]

Technical issues[edit]

While the Washington and EU political compromises tolerating Ireland as a corporate tax haven may be eroding, tax experts point to various technical flaws in the TCJA which, if not resolved, may actually enhance Ireland as a U.S. corporate tax haven:[140][141][307][308]

  1. Acceptance of Irish capital allowance charges in the GILTI calculation. Ireland's most powerful BEPS tool is the capital allowances for intangible assets scheme (i.e Apple's Green Jersey). With TCJA participation relief, U.S. multinationals can now achieve net effective U.S. tax rates of 0% to 2.5% via this Irish BEPS tool. In June 2018, Microsoft prepared a Green Jersey scheme.[139]
  2. Tax relief of 10% of Tangible Assets in the GILTI calculation.[140] This incentivizes the development of Irish infrastructure as the Irish tax code doubles this U.S. GILTI relief with Irish tangible capital allowances. Every $100 a U.S. multinational spends on Irish offices reduces their U.S. taxes by $42 ($21 & $21). Google has doubled their Irish hub in 2018.[309]
  3. Assessment of GILTI on an aggregate basis rather than a country-by-country basis.[141] Ireland's BEPS schemes generate large tax reliefs that net down the aggregate global income eligible for GILTI assessment, thus reducing TCJA's anti-BEPS protections, and making Ireland's BEPS tools a key part of U.S. multinational post-TCJA tax planning.

A June 2018 IMF country report on Ireland, while noting the significant exposure of Ireland's economy to U.S. corporates, concluded that the TCJA may not be as effective as Washington expects in addressing Ireland as a U.S. corporate tax haven. In writing its report, the IMF conducted confidential anonymous interviews with Irish corporate tax experts.[310]

Some tax experts, noting Google and Microsoft's actions in 2018, assert these flaws in the TCJA are deliberate, and part of the U.S. Administration's original strategy to reduce aggregate effective global tax rates for U.S. multinationals to circa 10–15% (i.e. 21% on U.S. income, and 2.5% on non–U.S. income, via Irish BEPS tools).[311] There has been an increase in U.S. multinational use of Irish intangible capital allowances, and some tax experts believe that the next few years will see a boom in U.S. multinationals using the Irish "Green Jersey" BEPS tool and on-shoring their IP to Ireland (rather than the U.S.).[144]

As discussed in § Hines–Rice 1994 definition and § Source of contradictions, the U.S. Treasury's corporation tax policy seeks to maximise long-term U.S. taxes paid by using corporate tax havens to minimise near-term foreign taxes paid. In this regard, it is possible that Ireland still has a long-term future as a U.S. corporate tax haven.

It is undoubtedly true that some American business operations are drawn offshore by the lure of low tax rates in tax havens; nevertheless, the policies of tax havens may, on net, enhance the U.S. Treasury's ability to collect tax revenue from American corporations.

— James R. Hines Jr. & Eric M Rice, Fiscal Paradise: Foreign tax havens and American business, 1994.[29]

In February 2019, Brad Setser from the Council on Foreign Relations, wrote a New York Times article highlighting material issues with TCJA.[19]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ireland has also been labelled an "offshore financial centre" (OFC) and also a "Conduit OFC", which tax academics consider to be synomonous with tax havens, however, unlike the tax haven label, Ireland does not raise formal objection to OFC labels
  2. ^ The 0% rate is from the Double Irish and Single Malt BEPS tools; the Capital Allowances for Intangible Assets (CAIA) (or Green Jersey) BEPS tool has a normal effective rate of 2.5%, but was temporarily reduced to 0% in 2015 for Apple's leprechaun economics restructuring
  3. ^ a b The U.S. multinational use of Irish BEPS schemes such as the Double Irish are sometimes mis-understood as being only used for EU–sourced revenues. For example, in 2016, Facebook recorded global revenues of $27 billion, while Facebook in Ireland paid €30 million in Irish tax on Irish revenues of €13 billion (approximately half of all global revenues).[266] Similarly, when the EU introduced the GDPR regulations in 2018, Facebook disclosed that all of its non–U.S. accounts (circa 1.9 billion, of which 1.5 billion were non–E.U), were legally based in Dublin.[267] Similarly, Google is also believed to run most of its non–U.S. sales revenue and profits through its Dublin operation.[268][269]
  4. ^ a b In September 2018, Ireland had a global network of 73 bilateral tax treaties, and a 74th with Ghana awaiting ratification.[7]
  5. ^ Both the IMF, and the Conduit and Sink OFCs study, show that Luxembourg is by far the most popular destination for capital leaving Ireland; the IMF estimates that over half of the capital leaving Ireland goes to Luxembourg.[10]
  6. ^ Non–U.S. tax academics have labelled Washington's tolerance of U.S. multinationals using tax havens as an "exorbitant tax privilege",[13] however U.S. tax academics (Hines 2010,[14] Dryeng and Lindsey, 2009.[15]), have shown that U.S. multinational use of tax havens (U.S. multinationals are the largest users of tax havens in the world[13][16]), has maximised long-term U.S. exchequer, and/or shareholder returns, at the expense of other higher-tax foreign countries (see § Source of contradictions)
  7. ^ The TCJA system is described as hybrid, because it still forces minimum U.S. tax rates on foreign income under the TCJA GILTI regime.[17]
  8. ^ a b c S&P500 company, Pfizer reported that its 2019 tax rate would be circa 17 per cent, while S&P500 company, Medtronic, an Irish tax inversion, reported a rate of 15–16 per cent.[18]
  9. ^ The Capital Allowances for Intangible Assets (CAIA) Irish BEPS tool, is also known as the #Green Jersey. The U.S. GILTI anti-BEPS regime accepts CAIA's intangible capital allowances as deductible against GILTI tax. Thus, the CAIA's 0–2.5% effective Irish tax rate, under U.S. TCJA participation relief, now also becomes a 0–2.5% effective U.S. tax rate
  10. ^ U.S. corporates also includes U.S. tax inversions to Ireland such as Medtronic, whose effective operations, including executive team and operational headquarters, are all U.S.-based.
  11. ^ Ireland has no foreign corporates that are non–U.S./non–UK in its top 50 companies by revenue, and only one by employees (German Lidl, which sells into Ireland).[20] The UK multinationals in Ireland are either selling into Ireland (e.g. Tesco), or date from before 2009–2012, after which the UK overhauled its tax system and moved to a "territorial tax" model. Since 2009–12, the UK has become a major tax haven in its own right, competing with Ireland for US tax inversions.[21][22] Since 2009–12, no UK multinationals have moved to Ireland, and, in 2014, the UK HMRC reported that most prior UK corporate tax inversions to Ireland had returned.[23] The U.S. multinationals in Ireland date from prior to the 2017 TCJA, after which the US moved to a hybrid-"territorial tax" model.
  12. ^ These are structures set up to rival and compete for business from traditional tax haven tools such as the Cayman Islands SPC, for which Irish QIAIFs have specific provisions to support transferring SPC assets without tax leakage
  13. ^ a b Ireland was listed as a manufacturing tax haven in the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) (1981) Tax Haven and Their Use by United States Taxpayers (The Gordon Report). Washington, D.C.: Special Council for International Taxation, Internal Revenue Service
  14. ^ The European Parliament vote is not binding on the EU Commission to formally include these "EU tax havens" in the official EU list of tax havens (blacklist or greylist); to be binding, it must be a unanimous vote by all member states.[77]
  15. ^ a b Before 1996, the United States, like other high-income countries, had anti-avoidance rules—known as “controlled foreign corporations” provisions—designed to immediately tax in the United States some foreign income (such as royalties and interest) conducive of profit shifting. In 1996, the IRS issued regulations that enabled U.S. multinationals to avoid some of these rules by electing to treat their foreign subsidiaries as if they were not corporations but disregarded entities for tax purposes. This move is called “checking the box” because that is all that needs to be done on IRS form 8832 to make it work and use Irish BEPS tools on non–U.S. revenues was a compromise to keep U.S. multinationals from leaving the U.S. (page 10.)[13]
  16. ^ The U.S. refused to sign the OECD BEPS Multilateral Instrument ("MLI") on the 24 November 2016.
  17. ^ 2004 was the date of the last tax U.S. corporate tax amnesty where a repatriation tax of 5% was levied on offshore untaxed profits
  18. ^ This paper made several incorrect assertions, including that there had been no development since the original Hines–Rice list of 41 tax havens, and that all subsequent academic papers on tax havens had simply repeated the original Hines–Rice list
  19. ^ Under Section 291A of the 1997 Irish Tax and Consolidated Acts, users of Irish BEPS tools must conduct a "relevant trade" and perform "relevant activities" in Ireland to give the BEPS tool a degree of credibility and substance.[254][255][256] In effect, it can equate to an "employment tax" on the Irish subsidiary, however, to the extent that the "relevant activities" are needed within the Group (e.g. they are performing real tasks), then the effect of this "employment tax" is mitigated. While the Irish State has never published the employment metrics for using Irish BEPS tools, the evidence is that even where the "relevant activities" were completely unnecessary, the "employment tax" equates to circa 2–3% of revenues (see here).
  20. ^ The paper lists tax havens as: Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Switzerland, Singapore, Bermuda and Caribbean havens (page 6.)
  21. ^ Before the passing of the TCJA in December 2017, the U.S. was one of eight remaining jurisdictions to run a "worldwide" taxation system, which was the principal obstacle to U.S. corporate tax reform, as it was not possible to differentiate between the source of income. The seven other "worldwide" tax systems, are: Chile, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Korea, Mexico, and Poland.[301] The positive experience of the UK switch to a "territorial" system in 2009–12,[21][22] and the Japanese switch to a "territorial" system in 2009,[302] amongst others,[303] was continually highlighted by U.S. tax academics.



The following are the most cited papers on "tax havens", as ranked on the IDEAS/RePEc database of economic papers, at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.[37]

Papers marked with (‡) were also cited by the EU Commission's 2017 summary as the most important research on tax havens.[36]

  Papers highlighted explicitly label Ireland a tax haven (either by including Ireland in a table of "tax havens", or stating directly that Ireland is a "tax haven").
Papers on tax havens, ranked by academic citations, over the last 25 years.[37]
Rank Paper Journal Vol-Issue-Page Author(s) Year
1‡ Fiscal Paradise: Foreign tax havens and American Business[29] Quarterly Journal of Economics 109 (1) 149-182 James R. Hines Jr., Eric M. Rice 1994
2‡ The demand for tax haven operations[45] Journal of Public Economics 90 (3) 513-531 Mihir A. Desai, C Fritz Foley, James R. Hines Jr. 2006
3‡ Which countries become tax havens?[41] Journal of Public Economics 93 (9-10) 1058–1068 Dhammika Dharmapala, James Hines 2009
4‡ The Missing Wealth of Nations: Are Europe and the U.S. net Debtors or net Creditors?[32] Quarterly Journal of Economics 128 (3) 1321–1364 Gabriel Zucman 2013
5‡ Tax competition with parasitic tax havens[44] Journal of Public Economics 93 (11-12) 1261–1270 Joel Slemrod, John D. Wilson 2006
6 What problems and opportunities are created by tax havens?[40] Oxford Review of Economic Policy 24 (4) 661-679 Dhammika Dharmapala, James Hines 2008
7 In praise of tax havens: International tax planning[294]
(The paper does not explicitly list/reference any country as a tax haven)
European Economic Review 54 (1) 82-95 Qing Hong, Michael Smart 2010
8‡ End of bank secrecy: Evaluation of G20 tax haven crackdown
(Zucman does not explicitly label Ireland a tax haven as he does in other papers)
American Economic Journal 6 (1) 65-91 Niels Johannesen, Gabriel Zucman 2014
9‡ Taxing across borders: Tracking wealth and corporate profits[42] Journal of Economic Perspectives 28 (4) 121-148 Gabriel Zucman 2014
10‡ Treasure Islands[39] Journal of Economic Perspectives 24 (4) 103-26 James R. Hines Jr. 2010


(with at least 300 citations on Google Scholar)

  • Ronen Palan; Richard Murphy; Christian Chavagneux (2009). Tax Havens: How Globalization Really Works. Cornell University Press. ISBN 978-0-8014-7612-9.
  • Nicholas Shaxson (2011). Treasure Islands: Uncovering the Damage of Offshore Banking and Tax Havens. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-230-10501-0.
  • Jane G. Gravelle (2015). Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion (PDF). Congressional Research Service. ISBN 978-1482527681.: 6 
  • Gabriel Zucman (2016). The Hidden Wealth of Nations: The Scourge of Tax Havens. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0226422640.


  1. ^ a b Oireachtas Record (23 November 2017). "Dáil Éireann debate - Thursday, 23 Nov 2017". House of the Oireachtas. Retrieved 24 April 2019. Pearse Doherty: It was interesting that when [MEP] Matt Carthy put that to the Minister's predecessor (Michael Noonan), his response was that this was very unpatriotic and he should wear the green jersey. That was the former Minister's response to the fact there is a major loophole, whether intentional or unintentional, in our tax code that has allowed large companies to continue to use the double Irish [called single malt]
  2. ^ "Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadakar: Ireland is not a Tax Haven". Irish Independent. 13 September 2013. Separately, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar told attendees [at a U.S. Embassy event in Ireland] that "Ireland is not a tax haven, we do not wish to be a haven, nor do we wish to be seen as one".
  3. ^ a b c d Hugh O'Connell (23 July 2013). "OECD Chief: 'Ireland is not a tax haven'". Retrieved 29 April 2019. Pascal Saint Amans, the director of the OCED's centre for tax policy and administration, told an Oireachtas Committee today that Ireland does not meet any of the organisation's criteria to be defined as a tax haven – that there is no taxes, no transparency and no exchange of information
  4. ^ a b Vanessa Houlder (September 2017). "Trinidad & Tobago left as the last blacklisted tax haven". Financial Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Alex Cobham of the Tax Justice Network said: It's disheartening to see the OECD fall back into the old pattern of creating 'tax haven' blacklists on the basis of criteria that are so weak as to be near enough meaningless, and then declaring success when the list is empty."
  5. ^ a b c d e "Ireland is not a Tax Haven - EU Commissioner, Moscovici". Chartered Accountants Ireland. 27 January 2017. European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs Pierre Moscovici was in Dublin on Tuesday, appearing before the Oireachtas Finance Committee where he faced questions from TDs and Senators on the relaunched Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB).
  6. ^ a b Sujata Rao (20 March 2017). "Blacklisted by Brazil, Dublin funds find new ways to invest". Reuters. Retrieved 29 April 2019. * Ireland joined Panama and Monaco on Brazil blacklist.
  7. ^ "Revenue: Double Taxation Treaties". Revenue Commissioners. 3 September 2018.
  8. ^ a b c d Mark Paul (13 June 2018). "Ireland is the world's biggest corporate 'tax haven', say academics". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. New Gabriel Zucman study claims State shelters more multinational profits than the entire Caribbean
  9. ^ a b Reporter, Peter O'Dwyer (14 June 2018). "Ireland named as world's biggest tax haven". The Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Research conducted by academics at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Copenhagen estimated that foreign multinationals moved €90 billion of profits to Ireland in 2015 — more than all Caribbean countries combined.
  10. ^ a b "Ireland:Selected Issues". International Monetary Fund. June 2018. p. 20. Figure 3. Foreign Direct Investment - Over half of Irish outbound FDI is routed to Luxembourg
  11. ^ a b c d Nicholas Shaxson (2011). Treasure Islands: Uncovering the Damage of Offshore Banking and Tax Havens. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 187. ISBN 978-0-230-10501-0. [Ireland] It is the "captured state", over again.
  12. ^ a b Ronen Palan; Richard Murphy; Christian Chavagneux (2009). Tax Havens: How Globalization Really Works. Cornell University Press. p. 102. ISBN 978-0-8014-7612-9. John Christensen and Mark Hampton (1999) have shown [..] how several tax havens [including Ireland] have in effect been "captured" by these private interests, which literally draft local laws to suit their interests.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h Gabriel Zucman; Thomas Wright (September 2018). "THE EXORBITANT TAX PRIVILEGE" (PDF). National Bureau of Economic Research: 11. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  14. ^ a b James R. Hines Jr. (2010). "Treasure Islands". Journal of Economic Perspectives. 4 (24): 103–125. Lower foreign tax rates entail smaller credits for foreign taxes and greater ultimate U.S. tax collections (Hines and Rice, 1994). Dyreng and Lindsey (2009), offer evidence that U.S. firms with foreign affiliates in certain tax havens pay lower pay lower foreign taxes and higher U.S. taxes than do otherwise-similar large U.S. companies
  15. ^ a b c Scott Dyreng; Bradley P. Lindsey (12 October 2009). "Using Financial Accounting Data to Examine the Effect of Foreign Operations Located in Tax Havens and Other Countries on U.S. Multinational Firms' Tax Rates". Journal of Accounting Research. 47 (5): 1283–1316. doi:10.1111/j.1475-679X.2009.00346.x. Finally, we find that U.S. firms with operations in some tax haven countries have higher federal tax rates on foreign income than other firms. This result suggests that in some cases, tax haven operations may increase U.S. tax collections at the expense of foreign country tax collections.
  16. ^ a b c d e f "Half of U.S. foreign profits booked in tax havens, especially Ireland: NBER paper". The Japan Times. 10 September 2018. "Ireland solidifies its position as the #1 tax haven," Zucman said on Twitter. "U.S. firms book more profits in Ireland than in China, Japan, Germany, France & Mexico combined. Irish tax rate is 5.7%."
  17. ^ a b c Kyle Pomerleau (3 May 2018). "A Hybrid Approach: The Treatment of Foreign Profits under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act". Tax Foundation. Retrieved 15 April 2019. While lawmakers generally refer to the new system as a "territorial" tax system, it is more appropriately described as a hybrid system.
  18. ^ a b c Athanasiou, Amanda (19 March 2018). "U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: Corporate tax reform - Winners and Losers". Taxnotes International. pp. 1235–1237. The new tax code addresses the historical competitive disadvantage of U.S.–based multinationals in terms of tax rates and international access to capital, and helps level the playing field for U.S. companies, Pfizer CEO Ian Read.
  19. ^ a b Brad Setser (6 February 2019). "The Global Con Hidden in Trump's Tax Reform Law, Revealed". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 February 2019.
  20. ^ a b "Ireland's Top 1000 Companies". Irish Times. 2018.
  21. ^ a b c William McBride (14 October 2014). "How Tax Reform solved UK inversions". Tax Foundation. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  22. ^ a b c Kyle Pomerleau (5 April 2016). "The United Kingdom's Experience with Inversions". Tax Foundation. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  23. ^ a b Mike Williams (HMRC Director of International Tax) (23 January 2015). "The inversion experience in the US and the UK" (PDF). HM Revenue and Customs. In 2007 to 2009, WPP, United Business Media, Henderson Group, Shire, Informa, Regus, Charter and Brit Insurance all left the UK. By 2015, WPP, UBM, Henderson Group, Informa and Brit Insurance have all returned
  24. ^ a b "Global Shadow Banking and Monitoring Report: 2017" (PDF). Financial Stability Forum. 5 March 2018. p. 30. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Jurisdictions with the largest financial systems relative to GDP (Exhibit 2-3) tend to have relatively larger OFI [or Shadow Banking] sectors: Luxembourg (at 92% of total financial assets), the Cayman Islands (85%), Ireland (76%) and the Netherlands (58%)
  25. ^ a b Javier Garcia-Bernardo; Jan Fichtner; Frank W. Takes; Eelke M. Heemskerk (24 July 2017). "Uncovering Offshore Financial Centers: Conduits and Sinks in the Global Corporate Ownership Network". Scientific Reports. 7 (6246): 6246. arXiv:1703.03016. Bibcode:2017NatSR...7.6246G. doi:10.1038/s41598-017-06322-9. PMC 5524793. PMID 28740120.
  26. ^ a b "The countries which are conduits for the biggest tax havens (Ireland is 5th)". RTÉ News. 25 September 2017. Retrieved 29 April 2019. A new University of Amsterdam CORPNET study has found that the Netherlands, the UK, Switzerland, Singapore and Ireland are the leading intermediary countries that corporations use to funnel their money to and from tax havens
  27. ^ a b c "EU's Moscovici slams Ireland, Netherlands as tax 'black holes'". France 24 News. 18 January 2018.
  28. ^ a b Tax Havens and their use by United States Taxpayers, An Overview. U.S. Internal Revenue Service. 12 January 1981.
  29. ^ a b c d e f g James R. Hines Jr.; Eric M. Rice (February 1994). "FISCAL PARADISE: FOREIGN TAX HAVENS AND AMERICAN BUSINESS" (PDF). Quarterly Journal of Economics (Harvard/MIT). 9 (1). Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 August 2017. Retrieved 23 June 2018. We identify 41 countries and regions as tax havens for the purposes of U. S. businesses. Together the seven tax havens with populations greater than one million (Hong Kong, Ireland, Liberia, Lebanon, Panama, Singapore, and Switzerland) account for 80 percent of total tax haven population and 89 percent of tax haven GDP.
  30. ^ a b c d e f Gabriel Zucman; Thomas Torslov; Ludvig Wier (June 2018). "The Missing Profits of Nations". National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Papers. p. 31. Appendix Table 2: Tax Havens
  31. ^ a b c d e Laurens Booijink; Francis Weyzig (July 2007). "IDENTIFYING TAX HAVENS AND OFFSHORE FINANCE CENTRES" (PDF). Tax Justice Network and Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations. Various attempts have been made to identify and list tax havens and offshore finance centres (OFCs). This Briefing Paper aims to compare these lists and clarify the criteria used in preparing them.
  32. ^ a b c d e Gabriel Zucman (August 2013). "The Missing Wealth of Nations: Are Europe and the U.S. Net Debtors or net Creditors?" (PDF). The Quarterly Journal of Economics. 128 (3): 1321–1364. CiteSeerX doi:10.1093/qje/qjt012. Tax havens are low-tax jurisdictions that offer businesses and individuals opportunities for tax avoidance" (Hines, 2008). In this paper, I will use the expression "tax haven" and "offshore financial center" interchangeably (the list of tax havens considered by Dharmapala and Hines (2009) is identical to the list of offshore financial centers considered by the Financial Stability Forum (IMF, 2000), barring minor exceptions)
  33. ^ a b c Ronen Palan (4 April 2012). "Tax Havens and Offshore Financial Centres" (PDF). University of Birmingham. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 April 2018. Retrieved 23 June 2018. Some experts see no difference between tax havens and OFCs, and employ the terms interchangeably.
  34. ^ a b c d Ronen Palan; Richard Murphy (2010). Tax Havens and Offshore Financial Centres. Cornell Studies in Money. Cornell University Press. p. 24. ISBN 9780801476129. Yet today it is difficult to distinguish between the activities of tax havens and OFCs.
  35. ^ "'It's not Ireland's fault U.S. tax law was written by someone on acid'". Irish Independent. 13 September 2018. The economist [Kevin Hassett], who has previously referred to the Republic as a tax haven, said there had been a need to introduce reforms in the US, which have brought its corporate rate down to 21 per cent.
  36. ^ a b c d Vincent Bouvatier; Gunther Capelle-Blancard; Anne-Laure Delatte (July 2017). "Banks in Tax Havens: First Evidence based on Country-by-Country Reporting" (PDF). EU Commission. p. 50. Figure D: Tax Haven Literature Review: A Typology
  37. ^ a b c d e "IDEAS/RePEc Database". Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Tax Havens by Most Cited
  38. ^ a b James R. Hines Jr. (2007). "Tax Havens" (PDF). The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics. There are roughly 45 major tax havens in the world today. Examples include Andorra, Ireland, Luxembourg and Monaco in Europe, Hong Kong and Singapore in Asia, and the Cayman Islands, the Netherlands Antilles, and Panama in the Americas.
  39. ^ a b c d James R. Hines Jr. (2010). "Treasure Islands". Journal of Economic Perspectives. 4 (24): 103–125. Table 1: 52 Tax Havens
  40. ^ a b Dhammika Dharmapala (December 2008). "What Problems and Opportunities are Created by Tax Havens?". Oxford Review of Economic Policy. 24 (4): 3. Table 1: List of Tax Havens
  41. ^ a b c d Dhammika Dharmapala; James R. Hines Jr. (2009). "Which countries become tax havens?" (PDF). Journal of Public Economics. 93 (9–10): 1058–1068. doi:10.1016/j.jpubeco.2009.07.005. S2CID 16653726. Page 1067: List of Tax Havens
  42. ^ a b Gabriel Zucman (August 2014). "Taxing across Borders: Tracking Personal Wealth and Corporate Profits" (PDF). Journal of Economic Perspectives. 28 (4): 121–48. doi:10.1257/jep.28.4.121. The balance of payments provides a country-by-country decomposition of this total, indicating that 55 percent are made in six tax havens: the Netherlands, Bermuda, Luxembourg, Ireland, Singapore, and Switzerland (Figure 2)
  43. ^ a b Richard Rubin (10 June 2018). "Zucman:Corporations Push Profits Into Corporate Tax Havens as Countries Struggle in Pursuit, Gabrial Zucman Study Says". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Such profit shifting leads to a total annual revenue loss of $200 billion globally
  44. ^ a b c Joel Slemrod; John D. Wilson (6 September 2009). "Tax competition with parasitic tax havens" (PDF). Journal of Public Economics.
  45. ^ a b Mihir A. Desai; C Fritz Foley; James R. Hines Jr. (February 2006). "The demand for tax haven operations". Journal of Public Economics. 90 (3): 513–531. doi:10.1016/j.jpubeco.2005.04.004. Examples of such tax havens include Ireland and Luxembourg in Europe, Hong Kong and Singapore in Asia, and various Caribbean island nations in the Americas.
  46. ^ JANNICK DAMGAARD; THOMAS ELKJAER; NIELS JOHANNESEN (June 2018). "Piercing the Veil of Tax Havens". International Monetary Fund: Finance & Development Quarterly. 55 (2). The eight major pass-through economies—the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Hong Kong SAR, the British Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, Ireland, and Singapore—host more than 85 percent of the world's investment in special purpose entities, which are often set up for tax reasons.
  47. ^ Lukas Menkhoff; Jakob Miethe (December 2017). "Dirty Money Coming Home: Capital Flows into and out of Tax Havens" (PDF). German Institute for Economic Research, DIW Berlin. p. 41. Table A1: Tax havens full list:IRELAND
  48. ^ Ronen Palan (June 2013). "CITY UNIVERSITY PERC: The Governance of the Black Holes of the World Economy: Shadow Banking and Offshore Finance" (PDF). City, University of London. p. 11. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 October 2015. Retrieved 23 June 2018. A Survey of surveys of the eleven best known and most authoritative lists of tax havens of the world found that Switzerland is considered as a tax haven by nine of them, Luxembourg and Ireland by eight, the Netherlands by two and Belgium by one
  49. ^ Petr Jansky; Miroslav Palansky (May 2017). "Estimating the Scale of Corporate Profit Shifting: Tax Revenue Losses Related to Foreign Direct Investment" (PDF). United Nations University. p. 5. Countries traditionally perceived as tax havens (Cyprus, Ireland and the United Kingdom)
  50. ^ a b Professor Jim Stewart (2016). "TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN BUSINESS SCHOOL: Irish MNC Tax Strategies" (PDF). Trinity College Dublin. p. 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 April 2022. Ireland meets all of these characteristics and together with Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland have been described as the four OECD tax havens.
  51. ^ "Offshore Shell Games 2017" (PDF). Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy. 2017. p. 17.
  52. ^ "OFFSHORE SHELL GAMES REPORT: US firms are keeping billions in offshore 'tax havens' - and Ireland is high on the list". Fora, Sunday Business Post. 15 October 2016. The study provided figures for the combined profits reported by American multinational corporations in '10 notorious tax havens' – a list that included Ireland, the Netherlands and Switzerland
  53. ^ "Ireland named world's 6th worst corporate tax haven". 12 December 2016.
  54. ^ "Oxfam says Ireland is a tax haven judged by EU criteria". Irish Times. 28 November 2017.
  55. ^ "2021 ranking".
  56. ^ "Ireland".
  57. ^ a b "INTERNATIONAL TAXATION: Large U.S. Corporations and Federal Contractors with Subsidiaries in Jurisdictions Listed as Tax Havens or Financial Privacy Jurisdictions" (PDF). U.S. GAO. 18 December 2008. p. 12. Table 1: Jurisdictions Listed as Tax Havens or Financial Privacy Jurisdictions and the Sources of Those Jurisdictions
  58. ^ Gravelle, Jane (15 January 2015). "Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion". Cornell University. p. 4. Table 1. Countries Listed on Various Tax Haven Lists
  59. ^ a b Senator Carl Levin; Senator John McCain (21 May 2013). "Offshore Profit Shifting and the U.S. Tax Code - Part 2 (Apple Inc.)". US Senate. p. 3. A number of studies show that multinational corporations are moving "mobile" income out of the United States into low or no tax jurisdictions, including tax havens such as Ireland, Bermuda, and the Cayman Islands.
  60. ^ a b "Senators insists Ireland IS a tax haven, despite ambassador's letter: Carl Levin and John McCain have dismissed the Irish ambassador's account of Ireland's corporate tax system". 31 May 2013. Senators LEVIN and McCAIN: Most reasonable people would agree that negotiating special tax arrangements that allow companies to pay little or no income tax meets a common-sense definition of a tax haven.
  61. ^ a b "Ireland rejects U.S. senator claims as tax spat rumbles on". Reuters. 31 May 2013.
  62. ^ Jim Tankersley (10 June 2018). "Tax Havens Blunt Impact of Corporate Tax Cut, Economists Say". New York Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019. Large corporations like Apple, Google, Nike and Starbucks all take steps to book profits in tax havens such as Bermuda and Ireland
  63. ^ a b Jonathan Weil (11 February 2014). "Weil on Finance: Yes, Ireland Is a Tax Haven". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  64. ^ Damian Paletta; Kate Linebaugh (15 October 2013). "Dublin Moves to Block Controversial Tax Gambit". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 25 April 2019. At least 125 major U.S. companies have registered several hundred subsidiaries or investment funds at 70 Sir John Rogerson's Quay, a seven-story building in Dublin's docklands, according to a review of government and corporate records by The Wall Street Journal. The common thread is the building's primary resident: Matheson, an Irish law firm that specializes in ways companies can use Irish tax law.
  65. ^ Martin Sullivan (Forbes Tax Group) (November 2014). "If Ireland Is Not A Tax Haven, What Is It?". Forbes. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  66. ^ Vanessa Houlder; Vincent Boland; James Politi (29 April 2014). "Tax avoidance: The Irish inversion". Financial Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019. That undermines Ireland's insistence that it is not a tax haven, making it more difficult to defend its system in an international climate that is turning sharply against tax avoidance.
  67. ^ Economist Editorial (8 October 2015). "Still slipping the net Europe's corporate-tax havens say they are reforming. Up to a point". The Economist. Retrieved 25 April 2019. The Netherlands, and other low-tax havens such as Ireland and Luxembourg, have attracted much criticism from other countries for the legal loopholes they leave open to encourage such tax avoidance by big corporations.
  68. ^ a b Aidan Regan (25 April 2019). "Ireland is a tax haven — and that's becoming controversial at home". Washington Post. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  69. ^ Lucinda Shen (14 July 2016). "This Tax Haven Just Revised Its 2015 GDP up From 7.8% to 26.3%". Fortune. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  70. ^ Joseph Stiglitz (2 September 2016). "'Cheating' Ireland, muddled Europe". Irish Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  71. ^ Lawrence Summers (22 October 2017). "One last time on who benefits from corporate tax cuts". The Washington Post. Retrieved 25 April 2019. These examples feel far more relevant to the corporate tax issue analysis than comparisons to small economies and tax havens like Ireland and Switzerland upon which the CEA relies
  72. ^ Gabriel Zucman (8 November 2017). "The desperate inequality behind global tax dodging". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 April 2019. Our research shows that six European tax havens alone (Luxembourg, Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Malta and Cyprus) siphon off a total of €350bn every year
  73. ^ Gráinne Ní Aodha (28 January 2018). "WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM: 'That's a joke', 'stealing': Ireland's low corporate tax rate criticised by leading economists at Davos". Retrieved 25 April 2019. IRELAND'S CORPORATE TAX rate has come under heavy criticism at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
  74. ^ Yanis Varoufakis (12 June 2018). "Ireland a tax haven 'free-riding' on Europe". Irish Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  75. ^ "Tax haven blacklisting in Latin America". Tax Justice Network. 6 April 2017.
  76. ^ "Oregon Department of Revenue made a recommendation that Ireland be included as a 'listed jurisdiction' or tax haven". Irish Independent. 26 March 2017.
  77. ^ "The Netherlands is a tax haven alongside Ireland, Malta and Cyprus, say MEPs". 27 March 2019. Retrieved 20 April 2019. Members of the European parliament have voted to include the Netherlands, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta and Cyprus on the official EU tax haven black list.
  78. ^ Cliff Taylor (28 March 2019). "Is Ireland a tax haven? European Parliament says yes". Irish Times. Retrieved 20 April 2019. The Republic helps big multinationals to engage in aggressive tax planning and the European Commission should regard it as one of five "EU tax havens" until substantial tax reforms are implemented.
  79. ^ Colm Ó Mongáin (26 March 2019). "Ireland likened to tax haven in report accepted in European Parliament". RTÉ News. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  80. ^ Simon Bowers (4 March 2019). "Seven EU Countries Labeled 'Tax Havens' in Parliament Report". International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  81. ^ a b "German-Irish relationship faces stress over tax-avoidance measures: German coalition parties name Irish-based tech giants in vow to tackle tax fraud and avoidance". Irish Times. 13 January 2018. SPD parliamentary secretary Carsten Schneider called Irish "tax dumping" a "poison for democracy" ahead of a vote which saw the Bundestag grant Ireland's request
  82. ^ "German party rejects Irish loan repayment plan that could save €150m". Irish Times. 17 November 2017. We won't go along with this free pass for Ireland because we don't want ongoing tax dumping in the EU. We're not talking about Ireland's 12.5 per cent tax rate here, but secret deals that reduce that tax burden to near zero.
  83. ^ "Man Making Ireland Tax Avoidance Hub Proves Local Hero". Bloomberg. 28 October 2013. Google Inc., Facebook Inc. and LinkedIn Corp. wound up in Ireland because they could reduce their tax bills. Their success is leading European and U.S. politicians to label the country a tax haven that must change its ways
  84. ^ "The 'Holy Grail of tax avoidance schemes' was made in the US". Irish Times. 26 July 2014.
  85. ^ "Ireland is Apple's 'Holy Grail of tax avoidance': The firm pays just two per cent tax on profits in Ireland but has denied using any "tax gimmicks"". 23 May 2013.
  86. ^ a b Weyzig, Francis (2013). "Tax treaty shopping: structural determinants of FDI routed through the Netherlands" (PDF). International Tax and Public Finance. 20 (6): 910–937. doi:10.1007/s10797-012-9250-z. S2CID 45082557. The four OECD member countries Luxembourg, Ireland, Belgium and Switzerland, which can also be regarded as tax havens for multinationals because of their special tax regimes.
  87. ^ Weyzig, Francis (October 2017). "The Nasty Four must show their real colours". International Tax and Public Finance.
  88. ^ Gavin McLoughlin (29 January 2019). "Under siege: world leaders take 'tax haven' swipe at us". Irish Independent. Retrieved 25 April 2019. Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki made an emotive plea for reform - saying EU tax havens should be abolished in a thinly veiled swipe at Ireland.
  89. ^ Diarmuid Ferriter (16 June 2018). "Semantics and Ireland's tax status Department of Finance persists in denying Ireland is world's biggest tax haven". Irish Times. Despite such developments, "Team Ireland" has constantly dismissed the description of Ireland as a tax haven, even when the extent of that haven is patently obvious.
  90. ^ Times Editorial (2 December 2017). "EDITORIAL: Corporate tax: defending the indefensible". Irish Times. There is a broad consensus that Ireland must defend its 12.5 per cent corporate tax rate. But that rate is defensible only if it is real. The great risk to Ireland is that we are trying to defend the indefensible. It is morally, politically and economically wrong for Ireland to allow vastly wealthy corporations to escape the basic duty of paying tax. If we don't recognise that now, we will soon find that a key plank of Irish policy has become untenable.
  91. ^ John Holden (January 2017). "The United States' new view of Ireland: 'tax haven'". Irish Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  92. ^ Fintan O'Toole (16 April 2016). "US taxpayers growing tired of Ireland's one big idea". Irish Times. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  93. ^ Cillian Doyle (21 January 2016). "Is Ireland a one-trick pony by enticing corporations with low taxes?: Cillian Doyle says Ireland is a tax haven and we should change our ways before the decisions are taken out of our hands". Retrieved 25 April 2019. And as the UN's Philip Aston says, 'when lists of tax havens are drawn up, Ireland is always prominently among them'. The U.S. Senate similarly found that by any 'common sense definition of a tax haven' Ireland easily met the criteria. I mean when Forbes regularly ranks you in their list of 'Top ten tax havens', there's not really much of a debate to be had.
  94. ^ "Is Ireland a tax haven for corporations?". Clare Daly TD. 29 May 2013. Archived from the original on 14 May 2018. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  95. ^ "Is Ireland a tax haven?". Richard Boyd Barrett TD. August 2013. Archived from the original on 26 June 2018. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  96. ^ "Dail Eireann Oireachtas Debates: Search". 20 December 2018.
  97. ^ "SINN FEIN: MEP McCarthy criticises EU tax haven blacklist as a whitewash". Sinn Féin. 6 December 2017.
  98. ^ "SINN FEIN: Irish state's tax haven activities contribute to obscene inequality". Sinn Féin. 18 October 2017.
  99. ^ "LABOUR PARTY: Time to 'definitively address' Ireland's tax haven reputation: Joan Burton drafts Bill to establish tax commission to rehabilitate State's 'last chance saloon' on tax justice". Irish Times. 3 July 2018.
  100. ^ ""The golden goose may be killed" - Former IMF official warns Ireland to prepare for end to tax regime". Newstalk. 21 June 2018.
  101. ^ Alderman, Liz (8 July 2021). "Ireland's Days as a Tax Haven May be Ending, but Not Without a Fight". The New York Times.
  102. ^ Halpin, Padraic; Humphries, Conor (7 October 2021). "Ireland agrees to global tax deal, sacrificing prized low rate". Reuters.
  103. ^ "Global tax deal inches closer as holdout Ireland agrees to sign up". CNBC. 7 October 2021.
  104. ^ Seamus Coffey (18 June 2018). "Who shifts profits to Ireland". Economic Incentives. University College Cork. Eurostat's structural business statistics give a range of measures of the business economy broken down by the controlling country of the enterprises. Here is the Gross Operating Surplus generated in Ireland in 2015 for the countries with figures reported by Eurostat.
  105. ^ "CSO paints a very different picture of Irish economy with new measure". Irish Times. 15 July 2017.
  106. ^ "New economic Leprechaun on loose as rate of growth plunges". Irish Independent. 15 July 2017.
  107. ^ Brad Setser (11 May 2018). "Ireland Exports its Leprechaun". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Ireland has, more or less, stopped using GDP to measure its own economy. And on current trends [because Irish GDP is distorting EU–28 aggregate data], the eurozone taken as a whole may need to consider something similar.
  108. ^ Gabriel Zucman; Thomas Tørsløv; Ludvig Wier (8 June 2018). "The Missing Profits of Nations" (PDF). National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Papers. p. 25. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Profit shifting also has a significant effect on trade balances. For instance, after accounting for profit shifting, Japan, the UK, France, and Greece turn out to have trade surpluses in 2015, in contrast to the published data that record trade deficits. According to our estimates, the true trade deficit of the United States was 2.1% of GDP in 2015, instead of 2.8% in the official statistics—that is, a quarter of the recorded trade deficit of the United States is an illusion of multinational corporate tax avoidance.
  109. ^ a b c Gabriel Zucman; Thomas Torslov; Ludvig Wier (June 2018). "APPENDIX 1 Table 2 : The Missing Profits of Nations". National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Papers. p. 31. Ireland's effective tax rate on all foreign corporates (U.S. and non-U.S.) is 4%
  110. ^ Fintan O'Toole (16 June 2018). "Ireland is becoming the tax haven of choice for profit-shifting multinationals". Irish Times. Retrieved 10 March 2019.
  111. ^ a b c Brad Setser; Cole Frank (25 April 2018). "Tax Avoidance and the Irish Balance of Payments". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  112. ^ a b Zachary Mider (1 March 2017). "Tracking Tax Runaways". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  113. ^ Vincent Boland (9 December 2014). "Tax deals raise questions over Ireland's growth spurt". Financial Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Economists suggest offshore activity has given misleading picture of health.
  114. ^ Michael Halligan (16 February 2015). "Irish overseas 'contract manufacturing' mainly tax avoidance". FinFacts Ireland. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  115. ^ Seamus Coffey (19 March 2015). "The Growth Effect of 'Contract Manufacturing'". Economic Incentives. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  116. ^ Editorial (15 December 2017). "Revealed Eight facts you may not know about the Apple Irish plant". Irish Independent. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  117. ^ a b Simon Bowers (29 May 2013). "Apple's multi-billion dollar, low-tax profit hub: Knocknaheeny, Ireland". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  118. ^ Alex Cobham (28 June 2018). "New report: is Apple paying less than 1% tax in the EU?". Tax Justice Network. Retrieved 29 April 2019. The use of private "unlimited liability company" (ULC) status, which exempts companies from filing financial reports publicly. The fact that Apple, Google and many others continue to keep their Irish financial information secret is due to a failure by the Irish government to implement the 2013 EU Accounting Directive, which would require full public financial statements, until 2017, and even then retaining an exemption from financial reporting for certain holding companies until 2022
  119. ^ Richard Murphy (4 July 2018). "Ireland's playing games in the last chance saloon of tax justice". Tax Research UK. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Local subsidiaries of multinationals must always be required to file their accounts on public record, which is not the case at present. Ireland is not just a tax haven at present, it is also a corporate secrecy jurisdiction.
  120. ^ Donal O'Donovan (18 March 2018). "Ireland has world's third largest shadow banking sector, hosting €2.02 trillion of assets". Irish Independent. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  121. ^ Jack Horgan-Jones (4 March 2018). "How Russian Firms Funnelled €100bn through Dublin via Section 110 SPVs". Sunday Business Post. Retrieved 29 April 2019. 125 Russian-linked companies raise €103 billion through IFSC; some entities linked to embargoed and sanctioned companies
  122. ^ Roundup (4 March 2018). "More than €100bn in Russian Money funneled through Dublin in SPVs". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  123. ^ a b "TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN: Ireland, Global Finance and the Russian Connection" (PDF). Professor Jim Stewart Cillian Doyle. 27 February 2018. p. 21. Regulation has been described as light touch regulation/unregulated
  124. ^ "Loophole lets firms earning millions pay €250 tax, Dáil told". Irish Times. 6 July 2016.
  125. ^ "Vulture funds pay just €8,000 in tax on €10 billion of assets". 8 January 2017.
  126. ^ Jack Horgan-Jones (8 January 2017). "Revealed: How vulture funds paid €20k in tax on assets of €20bn". Sunday Business Post. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  127. ^ "Vulture funds using charities to avoid paying tax, says Donnelly". Irish Times. 14 July 2016.
  128. ^ Stephen Donnelly (24 November 2016). "Why would a Vulture Fund own a Children's Charity". Dáil Éireann. Archived from the original on 11 June 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  129. ^ "Kinsella: Charity status for vulture funds - someone shout stop!". Sunday Business Post. 24 July 2016.
  130. ^ Emma Clancy (30 July 2016). "SECTION 110 and QIAIFs: How do vulture funds manage to pay practically no tax in Ireland?".
  131. ^ Joe Brennan (17 October 2016). "How do vulture funds exploit Irish tax loopholes?". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. SPVs, QIAIFs and ICAVs. They're acronyms only corporate wonks could love. But they have entered the lexicon of the Dáil in recent months as Opposition members have highlighted how these corporate structures have been used to great advantage by so-called vulture funds to minimise taxes on property bought at bargain basement prices in recent years.
  132. ^ a b c Mark Paul (28 June 2018). "Tax-free funds once favoured by 'vultures' fall €55bn: Regulator attributes decline to the decision of funds to exit their so-called 'section 110 status'". Irish Times. Retrieved 26 April 2019. Regulator attributes decline to the decision of funds to exit their so-called 'section 110 status'
  133. ^ a b c Jack Horgan-Jones (29 July 2018). "Vulture funds in new move to slash tax bills and escape regulation". Sunday Business Post. Retrieved 26 April 2019. Fianna Fáil claims that funds have discovered a "new nirvana". Documents also reveal new strategy to avoid regulation.
  134. ^ Michael McAleer (29 July 2018). "Seen & heard: Tax avoiding Vulture funds and TransferMate's deal with ING". Irish Times. Retrieved 19 April 2019. Vulture funds are putting in place new strategies to avoid tax and regulation, the Sunday Business Post reports. Citing a letter from Fianna Fail TD Stephen Donnelly to the Minister for Finance, it says the funds have moved substantial sums from the controversial Section 110 companies and into other entities called L-QIAIFs (loan-originating qualifying alternative investment funds). These do not file public accounts.
  135. ^ a b Gabriel Zucman; Thomas Tørsløv; Ludvig Wier (November 2017). "Why high-tax locations let tax havens flourish" (PDF). National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Papers.
  136. ^ a b c Fowler, Naomi (25 June 2018). "New Report on Apple's New Irish Tax Structure". Tax Justice Network.
  137. ^ a b c Martin Brehm Christensen; Emma Clancy (21 June 2018). "Apple's Irish Tax Deals". European United Left–Nordic Green Left EU Parliament.
  138. ^ "An Analysis of 2015 Corporation Tax Returns and 2016 Payments" (PDF). Revenue Commissioners. April 2017.
  139. ^ a b c "Irish Microsoft firm worth $100bn ahead of merger". Sunday Business Post. 24 June 2018.
  140. ^ a b c Mihir A. Desai (June 2018). "Tax Reform: Round One". Harvard Magazine.
  141. ^ a b c Ben Harris (economist) (25 May 2018). "6 ways to fix the tax system post TCJA". Brookings Institution.
  142. ^ "Minister Donohoe publishes Review of Ireland's Corporation Tax Code". Department of Finance. 21 September 2017.
  144. ^ a b Seamus Coffey, Irish Fiscal Advisory Council (18 July 2018). "When can we expect the next wave of IP onshoring?". IP onshoring is something we should be expecting to see much more of as we move towards the end of the decade. Buckle up!
  145. ^ "KPMG Ireland: QIAIFs" (PDF). KPMG. November 2015.
  146. ^ "A Guide to Investing in QIAIFs" (PDF). Dillon Eustace. November 2015.
  147. ^ "QIAIFs Davy Stockbrokers Fund Services" (PDF). Davy Stockbrokers. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 June 2018. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  148. ^ "Establishing a QIAIF in Ireland" (PDF). Matheson (law firm). 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 February 2016. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  149. ^ "A third of Ireland's shadow banking subject to little or no oversight: A report published on Wednesday by the Swiss-based Financial Stability Board". The Irish Times. 10 May 2017.
  150. ^ a b Mark Paul (5 March 2018). "Former Irish Central Bank Deputy Governor says Irish politicians mindless of IFSC risks". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Irish politicians are "mindlessly in favour" of growing the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC), according to a former deputy governor of the Central Bank
  151. ^ "TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN: 'Section 110' Companies. A Success story for Ireland?" (PDF). Professor Jim Stewart Cillian Doyle. 12 January 2017. p. 20. The same source in comparing different investment vehicles states that :- Another positive of the Section 110 Company is that there are no regulatory restrictions regarding lending as is the case with a QIF (Qualifying Investor Fund).
  152. ^ "IMF queries lawyers and bankers on hundreds of IFSC SPV boards". The Irish Times. 30 September 2016. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has raised concerns about instances where individual bankers and lawyers were appointed to hundreds of boards of unregulated special-purpose vehicles in Dublin's International Financial Services Centre.
  153. ^ a b "Powerful Central Bank secrecy laws limit public disclosure of key documents". Irish Times. January 2016.
  154. ^ "There are yet more Irish laws that allow foreign property investors to operate here tax-free". 10 September 2016. Certain funds in operation here are seeing foreign property investors paying no tax on income. The value of property owned in these QIAIFs is in the region of €300 billion.
  155. ^ "Clerys owner exploits tax avoidance loophole: Majority of shuttered Dublin store owned by collective asset vehicle (ICAV)". Irish Times. 4 October 2016. Icavs were introduced last year, following lobbying by the funds industry, to tempt certain types of offshore fund business to Ireland. It has since emerged, however, that the structures have been widely utilised to avoid tax on Irish property.
  156. ^ Mulligan, John (6 August 2016). "Kennedy Wilson firm pays no tax on its €1bn Irish property assets with QIAIFs". Irish Independent. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  157. ^ "Central Bank landlord a vulture fund paying no Irish tax using a QIF, says SF". Irish Independent. 28 August 2016.
  158. ^ Nicholas Shaxson (29 May 2013). "Tax 'trickery' in Ireland: A safe haven you can bank on". Irish Times. Ireland is a wonderful, special country in many ways. But when it comes to providing foreigners with lax financial regulation or tax trickery, it is a goddamned rogue state
  159. ^ "'Strong evidence' Ireland aiding EU banks' tax-avoidance schemes". Irish Independent. 28 March 2017. The massive profitability levels of European banks in Ireland suggests that large profits may be reported in Ireland as a tax-avoidance strategy
  160. ^ "Irish 'tax haven' benefits from offshore asset shifts, reports New York Federal Reserve". Irish Independent. 13 May 2018. The massive profitability levels of European banks in Ireland suggests that large profits may be reported in Ireland as a tax-avoidance strategy
  161. ^ "Ireland as a location for Distressed Debt: Orphaned Super QIF Example". Davy Stockbrokers. 2014.
  162. ^ "Irish SPV Taxation" (PDF). Grant Thornton. 30 September 2015. Irish withholding tax on transfers to Luxembourg can be avoided if structured as a Eurobond
  163. ^ "Mason Hayes and Curran:Silver Linings from Ireland's Financial Clouds with QIAIFs and Section 110 SPVs" (PDF). Mason Hayes & Curran Law. May 2016.
  164. ^ "How foreign firms are making a killing in buying Irish property". Irish examiner. 22 August 2016. The Irish Collective Asset-management Vehicle was a nifty little tax structure introduced last year. Designed to primarily facilitate the transfer of U.S. funds into Dublin, it allows foreign investors to channel their investments through Ireland while paying no tax.
  165. ^ "Fears over tax leakage via investors' ICAV vehicles". Sunday Times. 26 February 2017. Internal Department of Finance briefing documents reveal that officials believe there has been "extremely significant" tax leakage due to investors using special purpose vehicles.
  166. ^ "New Irish Fund Vehicle to Facilitate U.S. Investment – the ICAV". Walkers (law firm). 2015.
  167. ^ "The ICAV – Maples and Calder Checks the Box". Maples and Calder. March 2016. Since then we have retained our position as the leading Irish counsel on ICAVs and to date have advised on 30% of all ICAV sub-funds authorised by the Central Bank, which is nearly twice as many as our nearest rival.
  168. ^ "IRISH FUNDS ASSOCIATION: ICAV Breakfast Seminar New York" (PDF). Irish Funds Association. November 2015. p. 16. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2017. Retrieved 1 July 2018. ANDREA KELLY (PwC Ireland): "We expect most Irish QIAIFs to be structured as ICAVs from now on and given that ICAVs are superior tax management vehicles to the to Cayman Island SPCs, Ireland should attract substantial re-domiciling business
  169. ^ "Conversion of a BVI or Cayman Fund to an Irish ICAV". William Fry Law Firm. 1 October 2015.
  170. ^ "FEARGAL O'ROURKE: Man Making Ireland Tax Avoidance Hub Proves Local Hero". Bloomberg News. 28 October 2013.
  171. ^ Nicholas Shaxson (November 2015). "How Ireland became an offshore financial centre". Tax Justice Network. Retrieved 29 April 2019. But on another level this is an Irish version of a phenomenon we've encountered across the tax haven world: the state 'captured' by offshore financial services.
  172. ^ "COMMISSION DECISION of 30.8.2016 on STATE AID SA. 38373 (2014/C) (ex 2014/NN) (ex 2014/CP) implemented by Ireland to Apple" (PDF). EU Commission. 30 August 2016. Brussels. 30.8.2016 C(2016) 5605 final. Total Pages (130)
  173. ^ Margrethe Vestager (30 August 2016). "State aid: Ireland gave illegal tax benefits to Apple worth up to €13 billion". EU Commission. Retrieved 29 April 2019. The Commission's investigation concluded that Ireland granted illegal tax benefits to Apple, which enabled it to pay substantially less tax than other businesses over many years. In fact, this selective treatment allowed Apple to pay an effective corporate tax rate of 1 percent on its European profits in 2003 down to 0.005 percent in 2014.
  174. ^ Barrera, Rita; Bustamante, Jessica (2 August 2017). "The Rotten Apple: Tax Avoidance in Ireland". The International Trade Journal. 32: 150–161. doi:10.1080/08853908.2017.1356250. S2CID 158385468.
  175. ^ "CSO Press Release" (PDF). Central Statistics Office (Ireland). 12 July 2016. Retrieved 29 April 2019. As a consequence of the overall scale of these additions, elements of the results that would previously been published are now suppressed to protect the confidentiality of the contributing companies, in accordance with the Statistics Act 1993
  176. ^ Brad Setser (25 April 2018). "Tax Avoidance and the Irish Balance of Payments". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  177. ^ Cliff Taylor (8 November 2017). "Change in tax treatment of intellectual property and subsequent and reversal hard to fathom". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  178. ^ a b "CENTRAL BANK OF IRELAND: Enhancements to the L-QIAIF regime announced". Matheson (law firm). 29 November 2016.
  179. ^ "Turning the Tide: The OECD's Multilateral Instrument Has Been Signed" (PDF). SquirePattonBoggs. July 2017.
  180. ^ a b "Ireland resists closing corporation tax 'loophole'". Irish Times. 10 November 2017.
  181. ^ Jesse Drucker; Simon Bowers (6 November 2017). "After a Tax Crackdown, Apple Found a New Shelter for Its Profits". New York Times. A key architect [for Apple] was Baker McKenzie, a huge law firm based in Chicago. The firm has a reputation for devising creative offshore structures for multinationals and defending them to tax regulators. It has also fought international proposals for tax avoidance crackdowns.
  182. ^ a b "Tax Sandwich: Ireland's OECD–compliant tax tools" (PDF). Mason Hayes & Curran. 2014.
  183. ^ a b "Ireland as a domicile for QIAIFs" (PDF). Matheson (law firm). August 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 December 2017. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  184. ^ "Official Statistics and Data Protection Legislation". Central Statistics Office (Ireland). 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2019. Confidentiality and use of information for statistical purposes: Information obtained under the Statistics Act is strictly confidential, under Section 33 of the Statistics Act, 1993. It may only be accessed by Officers of Statistics, who are required to sign a Declaration of Secrecy under Section 21.
  185. ^ Justine McCarthy; Stephen O’Brien (14 November 2016). "IRISH EX. TAOISEACH BERTIE AHERN: Revenue 'kept Apple tax deal from cabinet'". Sunday Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  186. ^ Dan MacGuill (4 September 2016). "FactCheck: Is Apple really the "largest taxpayer in Ireland"?". Retrieved 29 April 2019. Revenue said: "Interactions between Revenue and individual taxpayers are subject to the taxpayer confidentiality provisions of Section 851A".
  187. ^ Nicholas Shaxson (11 November 2015). "How Ireland became a tax haven and offshore financial centre". Tax Justice Network. Retrieved 29 April 2019. The willingness to brush dirt under the carpet to support the financial sector, and an equating of these policies with patriotism (sometimes known in Ireland as the Green Jersey agenda,) contributed to the remarkable regulatory laxity with massive impacts in other nations (as well as in Ireland itself) as global financial firms sought an escape from financial regulation in Dublin.
  188. ^ Professor Philip Alston (13 February 2015). "'Nobody believes Ireland is not a tax haven' - UN official". Irish Times. Retrieved 29 April 2019. "The Irish authorities knew exactly what was going on, long before the international community finally blew the whistle.
  189. ^ Carole Cadwall; Duncan Campbell (2 March 2019). "Revealed: Facebook's global lobbying against data privacy laws". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 March 2019.
  190. ^ Nicholas Vincour (24 April 2019). "How one country blocks the world on data privacy". Politico. Retrieved 29 April 2019.
  191. ^ "Irish Taoiseach rebuts Oxfam claim that Ireland is a tax haven". Irish Times. 14 December 2016. But Mr Kenny noted that Oxfam included Ireland's 12.5 per cent corporation tax rate as one of the factors for deeming it a tax haven. "The 12.5 per cent is fully in line with the OECD and international best practice in having a low rate and applying it to a very wide tax base."
  192. ^ "'Ireland is not a tax haven': Department of Finance dismisses 'tax haven' research findings". 13 June 2018. Suggestions that Ireland are a tax haven simply because of our longstanding 12.5% corporate tax rate are totally out of line with the agreed global consensus that a low corporate tax rate applied to a wide tax base is good economic policy for attracting investment and supporting economic growth.
  193. ^ "Effective Corporate Tax in Ireland: April 2014" (PDF). Department of Finance. April 2014.
  194. ^ "TAX JUSTICE NETWORK: Ireland Financial Secrecy Index Country Report 2014" (PDF). Tax Justice Network. November 2014. Misleadingly, studies cited by the Irish Times and other outlets suggest that the effective tax rate is close to the headline 12.5 percent rate – but this is a fictional result based on a theoretical 'standard firm with 60 employees' and no exports: it is entirely inapplicable to transnationals. Though there are various ways to calculate effective tax rates, other studies find rates of just 2.5-4.5 percent.
  195. ^ "Effective Corporate Tax calculations: 2.2%". Irish Times. 14 February 2014. A study by James Stewart, associate professor in finance at Trinity College Dublin, suggests that in 2011 the subsidiaries of U.S. multinationals in Ireland paid an effective tax rate of 2.2 per cent.
  196. ^ "Ireland: Where Profits Pile Up, Helping Multinationals Keep Taxes Low". Bloomberg News. October 2013. Meanwhile, the tax rate reported by those Irish subsidiaries of U.S. companies plummeted to 3% from 9% by 2010
  197. ^ "Pinning Down Apple's Alleged 0.005% Tax Rate in Ireland Is Nearly Impossible". Bloomberg News. 1 September 2016.
  198. ^ "'Double Irish' and 'Dutch Sandwich' saved Google $3.7bn in tax in 2016". Irish Times. 2 January 2018.
  199. ^ "Facebook Ireland pays tax of just €30m on €12.6bn". Irish Examiner. 29 November 2017.
  200. ^ "Oracle paid just €11m tax on Irish turnover of €7bn". Irish Independent. 28 April 2014.
  201. ^ "Maples and Calder Irish Intellectual Property Tax Regime – 2.5% Effective Tax". Maples and Calder. February 2018. Structure 1: The profits of the Irish company will typically be subject to the corporation tax rate of 12.5% if the company has the requisite level of substance to be considered trading. The tax depreciation and interest expense can reduce the effective rate of tax to a minimum of 2.5%.
  202. ^ "Ireland as a European gateway jurisdiction for China – outbound and inbound investments" (PDF). Matheson. March 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 July 2018. Retrieved 19 June 2018. The tax deduction can be used to achieve an effective tax rate of 2.5% on profits from the exploitation of the IP purchased. Provided the IP is held for five years, a subsequent disposal of the IP will not result in a clawback.
  203. ^ "Uses of Ireland for German Companies: Irish "Intellectual Property" Tax of 2.5%" (PDF). Arthur Cox Law Firm. January 2012. p. 3. Intellectual Property: The effective corporation tax rate can be reduced to as low as 2.5% for Irish companies whose trade involves the exploitation of intellectual property. The Irish IP regime is broad and applies to all types of IP. A generous scheme of capital allowances in Ireland offers significant incentives to companies who locate their activities in Ireland. A well-known global company [Accenture in 2009] recently moved the ownership and exploitation of an IP portfolio worth approximately $7 billion to Ireland.
  204. ^ "World Intellectual Property Day: IRELAND'S 2.5% IP Tax Rate (Section 4.1.1)". Mason Hayes and Curran (Law Firm). April 2013. When combined with other features of Ireland's IP tax regime, an effective rate as low as 2.5% can be achieved on IP related income
  205. ^ a b c "European Commission - PRESS RELEASES - Press release - State aid: Ireland gave illegal tax benefits to Apple worth up to €13 billion". 30 August 2016. Retrieved 14 November 2016.
  206. ^ "Extension of SARP Scheme Tax incentives for foreign staff rejected". 29 December 2017. Under the arrangement – known as the special assignee relief (Sarp) – 30% of income above €75,000 is exempt from income tax. Those who benefit are also allowed a €5,000 per child tax–free allowance for school fees, if those fees are paid by their employer
  207. ^ "Tax Strategy Group: Irish Corporate Taxation" (PDF). October 2011. p. 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 April 2018. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
  208. ^ "Understanding the rationale for compiling 'tax haven' lists" (PDF). EU Parliament Research. December 2017. p. 3. There is no single definition of a tax haven, although there are a number of commonalities in the various concepts used
  209. ^ "Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe insists Ireland is not 'world's biggest tax haven': Report finds more multinational profits moved through Republic than the Caribbean". Irish Times. 13 June 2018. IFAC member and economist Martina Lawless said on the basis of the OECD's criteria for tax havens, which are internationally recognised, Ireland was not one.
  210. ^ a b c Gary Tobin (Department of Finance (Ireland)); Keith Walsh (Revenue Commissioners) (September 2013). "What Makes a Country a Tax Haven? An Assessment of International Standards Shows Why Ireland Is Not a Tax Haven" (PDF). Department of Finance (Ireland)/Economic and Social Research Institute Review. p. 403.
  211. ^ "Tom Maguire Tax Partner DELOITTE: Why Ireland's transparency and tax regime means it is not a haven". Irish Independent. February 2018. The OECD outlined certain factors which in its view described a tax haven.
  212. ^ "Suzanne Kelly PAST PRESIDENT IRISH TAX INSTITUTE: There is a definition of a tax haven - and Ireland doesn't make that grade". Irish Independent. 2 February 2016. The OECD stated that for a country to be a tax haven, it had to have certain characteristics.
  213. ^ a b James K. Jackson (11 March 2010). "The OECD Initiative on Tax Havens" (PDF). Congressional Research Service. p. 7. As a result of the Bush Administration's efforts, the OECD backed away from its efforts to target "harmful tax practices" and shifted the scope of its efforts to improving exchanges of tax information between member countries.
  214. ^ Ronen Palan (1 October 2009). "History of Tax Havens". History and Policy. The OECD is clearly ill-equipped to deal with tax-havens, not least as many of its members, including the UK, Switzerland, Ireland and the Benelux countries are themselves considered tax havens
  215. ^ "Oxfam disputes opaque OECD failing just one tax haven on transparency". Oxfam. 30 June 2017. Archived from the original on 20 June 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2018.
  216. ^ "Harmful Tax Competition: An Emerging Global Issue" (PDF). OECD. 1998.
  217. ^ "Towards Global Tax Co-operation" (PDF). OECD. April 2000. p. 17. TAX HAVENS: 1.Andorra 2.Anguilla 3.Antigua and Barbuda 4.Aruba 5.Bahamas 6.Bahrain 7.Barbados 8.Belize 9.British Virgin Islands 10.Cook Islands 11.Dominica 12.Gibraltar 13.Grenada 14.Guernsey 15.Isle of Man 16.Jersey 17.Liberia 18.Liechtenstein 19.Maldives 20.Marshall Islands 21.Monaco 22.Montserrat 23.Nauru 24.Net Antilles 25.Niue 26.Panama 27.Samoa 28.Seychelles 29.St. Lucia 30.St. Kitts & Nevis 31.St. Vincent and the Grenadines 32.Tonga 33.Turks & Caicos 34.U.S. Virgin Islands 35.Vanuatu
  218. ^ "Financial Times Lexicon: Definition of tax haven". Financial Times. June 2018. Archived from the original on 17 June 2018. Retrieved 19 June 2018. A country with little or no taxation that offers foreign individuals or corporations residency so that they can avoid tax at home.
  219. ^ "Tax haven definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary". Collins Dictionary. Retrieved 27 December 2017. A tax haven is a country or place which has a low rate of tax so that people choose to live there or register companies there in order to avoid paying higher tax in their own countries.
  220. ^ "Tax haven definition and meaning | Cambridge English Dictionary". Cambridge English Dictionary. 2018. a place where people pay less tax than they would pay if they lived in their own country
  221. ^ "Empty OECD 'tax haven' blacklist undermines progress". Tax Justice Network. 26 June 2017.
  222. ^ "EU blacklist names 17 tax havens and puts Caymans and Jersey on notice". The Guardian. 5 December 2017.
  223. ^ "Outbreak of 'so whatery' over EU tax haven blacklist". Irish Times. 7 December 2017. It was certainly an improvement on the list recently published by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, which featured only one name – Trinidad & Tobago – but campaigners believe the European Union has much more to do if it is to prove it is serious about addressing tax havens.
  224. ^ "Where is Luxembourg, Ireland and the Netherlands on the new EU blacklist". The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. 5 December 2017.
  225. ^ "EU puts 17 countries on tax haven blacklist". Financial Times. 8 December 2017. EU members were not screened but Oxfam said that if the criteria were applied to publicly available information the list should feature 35 countries including EU members Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Malta
  226. ^ "Ireland labelled a tax "black hole"". The Sunday Times. 19 January 2018. "Obviously many countries in the European Union are places where aggressive tax optimisation finds its place," Pierre Moscovici, the European commissioner for economic affairs and taxation, told reporters in Brussels yesterday. "Some European countries are black holes. . . I want to address this."
  227. ^ "Ireland likened to tax haven in report accepted in European Parliament". RTÉ News. 26 March 2019. Retrieved 27 March 2019. Ireland has been likened to a tax haven in a new report which was overwhelmingly accepted by the European Parliament.
  228. ^ Mihir A.Desai; C Fritz Foley; James R. Hines Jr (2006). "The Demand for Tax Haven Operations". Journal of Public Economics. 9 (3): 513–531. doi:10.1016/j.jpubeco.2005.04.004.
  229. ^ Gabriel Zucman (August 2013). "The Missing Wealth of Nations: Are Europe and the U.S. net Debtors or net Creditors?". The Quarterly Journal of Economics. 128 (3): 1321–1364. CiteSeerX doi:10.1093/qje/qjt012.
  230. ^ Dhammika Dharmapala (2014). "What Do We Know About Base Erosion and Profit Shifting? A Review of the Empirical Literature". University of Chicago. p. 1. It focuses particularly on the dominant approach within the economics literature on income shifting, which dates back to Hines and Rice (1994) and which we refer to as the "Hines–Rice" approach.
  231. ^ Sébastien Laffitte; Farid Toubal (July 2018). "Firms, Trade and Profit Shifting: Evidence from Aggregate Data" (PDF). CESifo Economic Studies: 8. Concerning the characterization of tax havens, we follow the definition proposed by Hines and Rice (1994) which has been recently used by Dharmapala and Hines (2009). A tax haven is defined as a location with low corporate tax rates, banking and business secrecy, advance communication facilities and self-promotion as an offshore financial centre (Hines and Rice, 1994, Appendix 1 p. 175)
  232. ^ Seamus Coffey (29 April 2013). "International GNI to GDP Comparisons". Economic Incentives.
  233. ^ When the Irish State issued a public statement refuting Gabriel Zucman's 2018 findings that Ireland is the largest BEPS hub in the world, Zucman immediately tweeted back a chart showing that Irish-based U.S. corporates were the most profitable in the world.Gabriel Zucman (13 June 2018). ""Ireland is not a tax haven"..."[self-published]
  234. ^ "Tax havens benefits spelt out". The Financial Times. 4 November 2009. The study said "a large body of economic research over the last 15 years" contradicted the popular view that offshore centres erode tax collections, divert economic activity and otherwise burden nearby high-tax countries.
  235. ^ a b "TAX CUTS AND JOBS ACT OF 2017 Corporate Tax Reform and Wages: Theory and Evidence" (PDF). 17 October 2017 – via National Archives. [In the Whitehouse advocating for the TCJA] Applying Hines and Rice's (1994) findings to a statutory corporate rate reduction of 15 percentage points (from 35 to 20 percent) suggests that reduced profit shifting would result in more than $140 billion of repatriated profit based on 2016 numbers.
  236. ^ "'Ireland is not a tax haven': Department of Finance dismisses 'tax haven' research finding". 13 June 2018. [According to the Department of Finance] The Zucman paper says it used an old 1993 list of "havens" drawn up by U.S. tax academics, James Hines and Eric Rice, and added the Netherlands and Belgium
  237. ^ "Irish tax haven label 'wrong'". Irish Examiner. 14 June 2018. A research paper naming Ireland as the "world's biggest tax haven" was flawed as it used data more than 20 years old — but the perception could be harmful to the country's reputation, a leading economist has said.
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