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Time for the bailed out banks to start paying tax – Doherty

11 April, 2018 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin’s Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has today launched a Sinn Féin paper setting out proposals to end the “tax free status” that Irish banks currently enjoy.  

Deputy Doherty said a 25% cap on the carrying forward of losses and a ten year time limit is required to ensure these now profitable banks pay a fair share.

Deputy Doherty said:

“It is time to end the tax free status the bailed out banks find themselves enjoying.  Twenty years of tax free profits for banks at a time when hundreds of people are on trollies in our hospitals, record waiting lists for patients and 10,000 homeless people is simply not on. The tax system must be built on fairness and this ridiculous situation must be ended so that hundreds of millions in tax can be collected.

“Last year, AIB and Bank of Ireland between them made €2.6bn in profit but paid not a red cent in tax. This is because of a 2014 decision by Fine Gael and Labour to change the rules allowed them write off 100% of losses against profit. This is an obscene situation as AIB is now looking into twenty years of profitability without any Corporate Tax liability.

“This paper sets out the international context showing Ireland to be an outlier in how generously it treats past losses. It also looks at the various options that could be put in place to close this tax break for the banks.

“My modest proposal is for a 25% cap coupled with a ten year time limit. In effect, this means the banks will be paying tax on three quarters of their profits until the losses are used up or until ten years have passed at which point they won’t be able to carry forward any losses.

“In 2018, the combined profits would have netted hundreds of millions of euro in revenue. This will be the case for years to come regardless of who owns the banks if these proposals are accepted.”

Note: Please see the document in question attached  

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