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Taoiseach: We'll consider tax cuts next year, if we can afford it

Enda Kenny told CNBC News that “income tax levels are too high here”.

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny speaks to the media at the IBEC CEO Conference at the Convention Centre in Dublin this morning
An Taoiseach Enda Kenny speaks to the media at the IBEC CEO Conference at the Convention Centre in Dublin this morning
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY has said that the Government is to consider income tax cuts if it’s possible to pay for them.

Speaking to CNBC News at the IBEC conference Convention Centre Dublin this morning Kenny said he accepts that “income tax levels are too high here”.

Kenny’s comments come after IBEC this morning advised the Government to cut income tax as a means of boosting consumer spending because many employers can not afford wage increases.

We recognise that income tax levels are too high here and its very important that we have a consistent and sustainable way of dealing with this. You can’t deal with it without having your economy grow. All of of this will be taken into account ahead of the budget for 2015.

“This is a priority for government, but you can only deliver on it if you can actually pay for it,” he added.

Kenny said that ahead of next year’s budget he would be looking at whether a tax cut would be possible.

“There’s a great pressure on people and the government are  aware of this,” he said.

Corporate tax

Kenny also flatly rejected claims made earlier this week by a research team at Trinity College which found that US multinationals pay an effective tax rate of just 2.2 per cent.

“The methodology for determining the actual rate of tax varies from academic to academic,” he said. “Actually all figures in that report included all US companies, even ones that are not resident here.”

The 2.2 per cent is not correct. The effective rate can range between 10 per cent and 11.9 per cent.

The figures use metholgies used by the Revenue Commissioners and EU assessors the Taosiseach says.

Read: Multinational companies paid just 2.2 per cent tax in 2011 – report >

Read: €24.5m yielded by Revenue in compliance campaign for those with two pensions >

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Rónán Duffy

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