EU Ruling Against Ireland Will Boost Chances of Irexit

IREXIT-PROSPECTS

The European Commission is expected to levy a judgment against Apple soon that could total in the billions of euros. This is as a result of Apple domiciling in Ireland and benefiting from its competitive tax regime. Essentially the Commission is seeking to undermine Ireland’s low tax policy which attracts multi-nationals to the Western periphery of Europe. As one minister told the Irish Times: “They are trying to make us tax Apple for stuff that doesn’t happen here. It’s nonsense.” They come for the tax regime and find a young, highly-educated workforce with a can-do attitude….

“We don’t believe we gave any state aid to Apple,” Eoghan Murphy, junior finance minister, told broadcaster RTE, “It’s in the national interest that we defend our international reputation in this regard.” Precisely. The bloated high tax states are going to attempt to hobble low tax Ireland with the handicaps that they have given to enterprises in their own countries. Most mainstream politicians of all parties are committed to Ireland being, in the words of the Taoiseach Enda Kenny, “the best little place to do business in the world”. The Commission is undermining that competitive advantage. The right-of-centre pro-business parties are going to fight this ruling, the left-of-centre parties were angry earlier this summer because the Commission overruled the Dáil (parliament) on water charges – forcing the state to charge for water supply which was hitherto delivered free to homes. EU law having primacy over laws made by Ireland’s lawmakers.  is looking more appealing to all sides…

Ireland’s contribution to the EU is rising by €380 million this year because its GDP is surging as the economy rebounds. Ireland is a net contributor to the EU budget after decades of being a net beneficiary. Ireland’s EU burden share will increase post-Brexit as the EU loses the second biggest net-contributor. This will change the debate, particularly as Dublin watches Ireland’s biggest trading partner Britain continue to thrive outside the EU…




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Quote of the Day

The FT’s Wolfgang Munchau on the “fake maths” of economic forecasts:

“The truth is that our ability to forecast the future beyond the current quarter is limited… The curse of our time is fake maths. Think of it as fake news for numerically literate intellectuals: it is the abuse of statistics and economic models to peddle one’s own political prejudice… The fakeness of the maths lies in an exaggerated inference. Economic models have their uses, as do opinion polls. They provide information to policymakers and markets. But nobody can see through the fog of the future.”

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