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I think we have to distinguish between Brass plate operations in the Irish Financial Services centre and companies with very substantial operations and thousands of employees in Ireland. Some of the latter may engage in financial engineering as well (Apple, Microsoft) but they all bring a level of technology we could only have dreamed of before (Intel, Google, Pfizer, Merck, Boston Scientific etc.). The brass plate operations are pretty close to indefensible and only cause Ireland reputational damage (and increase our net contribution to the EU through inflated GDP figures) and we would be well rid of them.

Of the fifty top companies in Ireland, 22 are Irish, 25 are USA, and three have their main operational base in the UK. None are from the rest of the EU. Either EU companies do not do aggressive tax planning, or they do not see any compelling reason to locate a large part of their operations in a small market on the edge of the EU which has significant cost disadvantages due to the cost of shipping or transporting goods to the main EU markets. It is our peripheral location and lack of economies of scale which are always going to make Ireland as an investment location a hard sell in the absence of any tax incentive.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Sep 10th, 2021 at 10:09:16 PM EST
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