Noonan: “Other EU member states are jealous of Ireland and they are out to get us” – – Our News, Your Views

Noonan: “Other EU member states are jealous of Ireland and they are out to get us”

The Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has seemingly fired a big shot at the European Union after claiming that other member states are “jealous of Ireland and they are out to get us.”

Mr Noonan’s scathing comments comes in a week were the European courts ordered Apple to pay €13bn in back taxes to the Irish Government despite the fact both the state and technology giant agreed upon a 12.5% corporate tax rate. Mr Noonan told reporters outside the Dáil: “There is a lot of envy across Europe about how successful we have been in putting the headquarters of so many companies into Ireland.”

The Finance Minister remained adamant that Ireland is a target for other EU nations, and cited the Taoiseach’s first EU meeting after taking office in 2011 when the then French president Nicolas Sarkozy made “an attempt to bully” Ireland into raising corporation tax to 15% in exchange for a bailout programme.

Mr Noonan further explained: “I think that was a dreadful thing to do at the time,” he said. “There are people still of the same view that Ireland is doing too well in terms of investment and that would like to change the 12.5%.

“And I would like to say to international investors and to the Irish people that there will be no change in our 12.5%. “We stand by the treaty. It’s in our competence to set the rates and no bridgehead by any commissioner is going to change that.

We’ll fight it at home and abroad and in the courts.” Mr Noonan said he had “heard comments” from the United States in recent days that Ireland was “pro-business”, unlike continental Europe.

“We’ll reinforce the attractiveness of Ireland as a location by lodging an appeal,” he said.

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