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Pearse Doherty TD calls for end to banks’ tax breaks

14 March, 2018 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Finance, Pearse Doherty TD, has said the €40m profit of Permanent TSB joins AIB’s €1.6bn and Bank of Ireland’s €1bn profit, as bank profits that will go untaxed. 

He has called for a cap of 25% to be placed on losses that can be carried forward alongside a time limit on the use of any losses.

Deputy Doherty said:

“Another week, another bank with multi-million euro profits that will go untaxed. Something has to change.

"Placing a cap on the losses that can be carried forward by these banks, as was the case before Michael Noonan reversed it, is one way of making sure the taxpayer gets some benefit from these profits. 

"A cap of 50% was in place before but a tighter cap of 25% would bring in hundreds of millions of euro in tax going forward.

"Britain has recently moved in this direction with a 25% limit on banks’ losses that can be carried forward.

"Alongside this cap there is a need to insert a sunset clause in the rules so that these losses no matter how large cannot be used after a set period of time. 

"Like caps on the percentage that can be carried forward these sunset clauses are common across the OECD.  In having no cap or time limit Ireland is an outlier.

"The combined effect is to limit the losses that can be carried forward so that these banks don’t enjoy decades of tax immunity. 

"The Minister has indicated he is only willing to look at the bank levy that is already in place. 

"This is an unsatisfactory means of tackling this issue as it is not linked to profitability in any way.

The tax breaks enjoyed by the banks are unjustifiable and must be ended. This is an issue I will be bringing to the Dáil week after week until I see some progress.”

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