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Corporate tax changes announced       printable version
14 Oct 2014: posted by the editor - Ireland

"Changes to the tax system will ensure certainty and stability for investors, and will make it easier to secure a strong flow of multinational investment and jobs in the coming years," Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton said today.

He was speaking at a Budget 2015 press briefing, along with Ministers of State Ged Nash and Damien English. His comments came shortly after  Minister for Finance Michael Noonan announced a comprehensive package of corporation tax measures in Budget 2015, which have been developed in close cooperation with Minister Bruton's Department and Agencies, t· ensure a strengthened flow of multinational investment and jobs, including:

· Measures t· encourage companies t· locate intellectual property in Ireland, including introduction of a Knowledge Development Box
· Removal of base year for R&D tax credit in Finance Bill 2014
· Improved tax incentives t· attract senior multinational decision-makers t· locate in Ireland
· Certainty around company residence rules, with a lead-in period t· end 2020 for existing companies

Budget 2015 will als· provide a series of new measures t· support start-ups and SMEs, provided through the Department of Finance and the Department of Jobs, including:

· A new scheme t· support start-up business
· A package of measures t· provide extra non-bank funding for SMEs, which will directly support additional jobs, including:

· an improved Employment and Investment Incentive scheme
· improved terms for the Credit Guarantee Scheme and Micr· Finance Scheme, both of which are fully funded for 2015
· full funding in 2015 for the Development Capital Scheme, Seed and Venture Capital Scheme, Innovation Fund Ireland and the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland

The improvements t· the income tax system announced in today's Budget will have major benefits for enterprise and job-creation, and have been advocated by Minister Bruton, his Agencies and business representative organisations for many years.

Minister Bruton today announced that capital spending by his Department will increase in 2015 t· over €500million, which will enable delivery of a comprehensive programme of spending on enterprise supports, including:

· Over 13,000 new jobs in companies supported by Enterprise Ireland - with major knock-on impacts in the form of extra jobs in supply and service companies of an extra 13,000 jobs
· Over 13,000 new jobs in companies supported by IDA Ireland, with major knock-on impacts in the form of an extra 9,100 jobs
· Over 1500 new jobs in business supported by the Local Enterprise Offices, again with knock-on impacts
· An ambitious programme of activities by Science Foundation Ireland, including new research centres

Speaking today, Mr Bruton said: "Companies considering investing in Ireland want tw· things above all from our corporation tax system - competitiveness and certainty. Over recent weeks and months my Department and our Agencies have worked closely with the Department of Finance t· maximise our offering t· investors on both fronts in a rapidly changing environment, and the measures Michael Noonan announced today deliver on that.

"Firstly, with the introduction of changes like a knowledge development box, changes t· the R&D tax credit and improved measures t· attract key senior executives t· Ireland, they make major increases in our ability t· compete internationally in this area.

"Secondly, at a time of major change in the international corporation tax system, we are moving ahead of our competitors and ahead of the BEPS process t· announce changes t· our residency rules. By announcing these changes early, and by providing a lead-in period t· 2020 for existing companies, we are providing certainty for investors.

"Multinational investment plays a major part in our overall jobs strategy, with a series of reforms introduced t· improve our offering in the past 3 years and more than 30,000 direct and indirect jobs added as a result over that period. However this is a quickly-changing and hugely competitive area and we must be constantly looking at ways t· improve our offering in that environment. I am confident that with the changes announced today, we will have an offering that I and the IDA can sell t· potential investors. I will be travelling t· the USA with IDA in the coming weeks, and I know that these changes  will strengthen our ability t· attract much-needed multinational investment and jobs over the coming years.

"Today's Budget als· makes a range of other changes which will be of major benefit in our efforts t· create jobs. I first made the case 18 months ag· that change was needed t· our income tax system in order t· create jobs, and the changes announced today will make an important difference in that area. Changes t· tax incentives for start-ups and SMEs on which I have worked with Minister Noonan will make it easier for new businesses t· start up, and for established businesses t· attract investment, export and create jobs. All in all today's Budget will make it easier for us t· build on the 70,000 extra jobs which have been created in the past tw· years and secure the economic recovery."

Minister of State for Business and Employment, Ged Nash said: "With our focus firmly on ensuring the economic recovery is felt by every family in Ireland, but in particular low and middle income families, I will shortly be establishing a Low Pay Commission wh· will advise the government on an annual basis on the appropriate rate of the national minimum wage.

"We will take the politics out of low pay through this independent Commission and ensure that Irish people wh· are on the lowest wages, wh· have borne the brunt of the recession, als· share in the recovery".

Welcoming the announcement, Min English said:  "As we know from other advanced economies, our future prosperity rests on our ability t· compete in a global economy that is increasingly driven by innovation.  This Government remains committed t· investing in research and innovation programmes t· develop the innovative capacity of Irish firms, t· enable them t· compete and succeed on international markets and generate long term successful enterprises which, in turn, generate and maintain long term sustainable jobs. Recent evolution of science policy has seen a greater concentration on the relevance and impact of research t· our enterprise base as well as a range of initiatives t· improve the coherence and effectiveness of our research system. We are targeting investment at areas where we are most likely t· get economic and societal return and this is delivering high quality, sustainable employment in sectors where global market opportunities are strong and Irish enterprise can compete."


IDA Ireland
The allocation t· IDA will enable, among other things:
· Deliver, by the end of this year, property programmes in Waterford and Athlone, with IDA further progressing the development of strategic property assets in Letterkenny and other regional locations in the context of the upcoming Regional Enterprise Strategy, t· be published by Min Bruton in the coming weeks
· In 2015, IDA target over 13,000 gross new jobs, and and build on the 2014 target of 155 investments.
· Provide for a full year of the Winning Abroad programme, with 35 additional resources on the ground in-market promoting Ireland and winning investment.   It als· provides for additional promotion under the Succeed in Ireland programme - which will target regional locations.        
· Provide, as part of the new IDA strategy, a focus on manufacturing, with more engagement with clients on the development of LEAN programmes.

 Enterprise Ireland
(a) Enterprise supports
Enterprise Ireland will continue t· strive for ambitious targets int· 2015, building on the success of recent years, by aiming t· support some 13,000 new jobs and t· increasing client exports t· some €19bn, well beyond the current 2014 target of€17.5bn:

Enterprise Ireland's capital allocation will als· facilitate the delivery in 2015 of:
· Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2013-2018, Development Capital Scheme and Innovation Fund Ireland
· Competitive Feasibility Funds: Build on the success achieved t· date on the Funds and launch 4 targeted funds during the year in 2015.
· Potential Exporters: Hold 9 Potential Exporter Awareness Events and 9 Potential Exporter Workshops across the country and target 700 companies t· have significant engagement with the EI Potential Exporter Division.
· Management Development Programmes: Continue t· provide management development programmes including the International Selling programme and target supporting over 800 participants on short management development courses like Excel at Export Selling. Roll out the new Platform for Growth Programme t· provide the benefits of access t· Enterprise Ireland's client management development programmes t· a greater number of companies
· Lean Programmes: target the provision of Lean Programmes for 120 companies t· increase business efficiency and competitiveness aiding company sustainability and protecting jobs
· Trade supports: Participation by hundreds of companies in trade events and missions throughout 2015 t· support Irish companies t· avail of opportunities in existing and emerging markets. With the assistance of Enterprise Ireland's overseas office network Irish companies will receive support t· target new customers t· win international business.
· International Growth Programmes: continued operation of the Graduates 4 International Growth Programme (G4IG), an initiative that brings together a graduate and a company that are both focused on making a lasting impact in overseas markets.

(b) Science, technology and innovation
The 2015 investment will enable Enterprise Ireland to:
· Enterprise Ireland will support 100 Innovative High Potential start Up Companies in 2015 with an associated 2,000 job commitments in 2 years' time from HPSU companies. These approvals will be across a range of sectors including life sciences, ICT and food. These companies are the source of potential star performers of the future and each one will create at least €1m in sales.
· Enterprise Ireland will support companies and academics t· win over €120 million in research funding from the EU's Horizon 2020 programme.
· Continue t· drive the innovation performance of indigenous industry and the commercialisation of state funded research.
· Support companies in Ireland t· target undertaking over 65 important collaborative projects with Irish third level institutions, through the Innovation Partnership Programme.
· Support the development of 130 new entrepreneurs in the New Frontiers Programme, Enterprise Ireland's entrepreneurial training programme.
· Continue the development of Knowledge Transfer Ireland and the wider national Technology Transfer system with a view t· creating over 30 new spinout companies and delivering over 120 new pieces of commercially relevant technology for industry.    
· Support the Innovation Voucher programme, which enables small businesses t· purchase innovation expertise from a third level institute. In 2015, Innovation Vouchers will support small companies in Ireland t· target completing over 450 projects.
· Further support the 15 existing Technology Centres, which are research centres of scale which deliver research solutions for sectors of companies, and explore the feasibility for similar research solutions in economically advantageous areas such as the Meat sector.
· Fund in the region of 109 R&D projects for client companies that are valued in excess €100,000.
· Establish a new Health Innovation Hub at national level, t· drive collaboration between the health system and commercial enterprises leading t· the development and commercialisation of new healthcare technologies, products, services and start‐ups emerging from within the health system and/or firms.  This will deliver a significant positive benefit for the life-sciences and ICT sectors in Ireland.  These sectors are of strategic importance t· Ireland having combined exports of over €140 billion in 2013.

A major initiative of the Government's job creation policy is the stimulation of enterprise and entrepreneurship at local level. In April this year the Government launched 31 Local Enterprise Offices t· act as a First Stop Shop for advice, guidance and support t· people seeking t· start their own business.

One of the major activities funded by the LEOs this year has been a competition t· find Ireland's Best Young Entrepreneur which attracted over 1,000 entries, stimulating enormous interest in entrepreneurship in every county in Ireland.

Increased funding been allocated for use by the newly established (LEOs) in 2015, which will enable them t· extend their range of competitive funding initiatives while maintaining the delivery of their core support services t· their micro- and small-business clients. The LEOs will continue t· work t· embed entrepreneurship within local communities and assist local businesses t· expand and grow and t· contribute t· increased local economic activity.

It is expected that this level of funding will help the LEOs t· support the creation of up t· 1,600 new jobs, t· provide Start Your Own Business courses t· over 3,000 participants and t· assign almost 2,800 mentors t· their clients in 2015

Science Foundation Ireland (SFI)
The SFI Budget will facilitate continued underpinning of the Action Plan for Jobs commitment t· use research and innovation t· drive job creation, through funding enterprise-facing research teams and major research centres across many strategically important areas.

The funding allocation in 2015 will enable SFI to:
· Science Foundation Ireland will fund a number of new SFI Research Centres building on the existing seven SFI Research Centres which were established in 2013 with an investment of €200 million from Government and €100 million from over 150 companies.  These new world-leading, large-scale SFI Research Centres will focus on strategic areas of economic importance t· Ireland, involve significant industry partnerships and leverage both in-kind and cash funding from industry.
· SFI will train over 3,000 researchers for future employment in key positions in Industry t· help drive areas of strategic national importance.  
· Continue t· develop its industry facing programmes - increasing the number of awards under the SFI's Strategic Partnership and SFI Spokes programmes. In 2015, SFI will support up t· 10 new Spokes programmes, 5 new Strategic Partnerships and 30 Industry Fellowships.  These programmes engage industries in collaborative research projects and leverage industry funding for research projects - both cash and in-kind.
· Support the delivery of Government targets under the EU Horizon 2020 (H2020) programme - the aim will be t· generate additional EU funding by leveraging against SFI funded research projects. Each of SFI's larger scale research centres have agreed ambitious targets and will have an EU grants manager t· deliver against these targets.
· Undertake an integrated recruitment programme in partnership with the Irish Universities t· attract world-class researchers, with exceptional reputations t· assume leadership positions in key areas of national importance that include: advanced manufacturing, bio-manufacturing, energy, marine, ICT, medical devices, agrifood, climate change, smart cities, ageing, connected health, and digital platforms, content and applications.

The Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions
Capital investment in the multi-annual PRTLI programme will further improve Ireland's competitive offering in terms of research capability, through

· Delivery, in 2015, of 5 key PRTLI physical infrastructural projects across Ireland's Higher Education Institutes, in areas such as biomedicine, materials science, nanotechnology, health, marine and energy.  By end 2015, it is expected that PRTLI Cycle 5 will have almost fully delivered on its infrastructural targets, providing, in total, c 64,000 sq m of space.  
· Funding of 15 Structured PhD programmes in 2015, will deliver highly trained, workplace ready",  research personnel, which will deliver for industry and will enhance Ireland's labour force capacity in a number of key strategic areas, including Pharma/ biopharmaceuticals, Medical Technologies, ICT, Food and Drink, Energy and Environment and Translational research sciences.  

2015 allocation will support:
· Continued delivery and transfer of novel ICT technologies through world-class research for exploitation by Irish industry.
· Tw· new start-up companies using Tyndall technology and know-how.
· Significant job creation targets from the direct support activities of the Tyndall hosted technology and SFI centres.

European Space Agency
Ireland's participation in ESA, co-ordinated by Enterprise Ireland, will continue t· support a growing number of Irish companies in the rapidly expanding European and global space markets. Investment in space programmes and associated support t· Irish industry yields an economic dividend much greater than the initial State investment.

The State investment in the coming years in ESA Space industry and research programmes is projected t· deliver the following impacts:
· A projected rise in total employment in ESA participating companies in the space industry and research sector from 1,570 in 2011 t· over 2,000 by 2015.
· A doubling of exports in ESA participating companies, from €27m in 2011 t· over €56m by 2015.
· Growth in turnover as a result of ESA investment from €35m in 2011 t· over €70m by 2015.

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