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Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil “voodoo economics” shredding Ireland’s reputation - Carthy

12 December, 2016 - by Matt Carthy MEP

Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy has said the voodoo economic policies of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil are now seriously damaging Ireland’s international reputation and inflicting unnecessary hardship on ordinary people.

Carthy's remarks follow the publication of a damning report which brands Ireland as one of the worst tax havens in the world, on a par with Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.

Development agency Oxfam, placed Ireland sixth in a list of 15 countries that facilitated large-scale corporate tax avoidance through profit-shifting, aggressive tax planning structures and so-called sweetheart deals.

Speaking today, Matt Carthy, a member of the European Parliament's Economic Committee said:

“The latest Oxfam report makes it clear that the voodoo economic policies of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil are shredding Ireland’s international reputation.

"Tax avoidance by multinational corporations is not just resulting in huge inequality between advanced economies and developing countries. It is also resulting in the growth of deep inequality in Irish society.

“Every euro hidden by tax avoiders in an off-shore account is one that should have been used to fund healthcare, water, education and other vital public services.

“The policies of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, in pandering to tax avoiding corporations while screwing ordinary workers, is inflicting hardship on people through brutal austerity and an ever-lengthening list of charges and taxes which discriminate against those least able to pay.

“Tax justice and the systematic abuse of tax law by the world's wealthiest individuals and corporations is now a major moral and political issue.

"More than 1,400 sweetheart deals for multinationals are now in place in countries across the EU.

"The Apple state aid ruling in Ireland shows that these sweetheart deals are not only morally outrageous – they’re also illegal.

“The fact that we had to rely on whistle-blowers to alert the world to what was going on shows the secrecy that surrounds the tax affairs of multinationals.

"The fact that these whistle-blowers and a journalist are being persecuted by the authorities for bringing this information into the public domain is an appalling illustration of political priorities.

“Minister Michael Noonan’s decision to appeal the EU Commission finding against Apple’s tax arrangements is putting Ireland at the centre of the debate on corporate tax avoidance.

“Sinn Féin has demanded a public inquiry into the circumstances in which those Apple tax rulings were issued.

“The facts are that the Irish Government has been involved in sweetheart deals with the likes of Apple.

"The Government should also stop assisting Apple in delaying the publication of the state aid ruling.”

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