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New US ambassador to Ireland says he is the luckiest man in the United States

Kevin O’Malley disagrees that it is merely the US laws that facilitates the ‘double Irish’ tax code.

The new US Ambassador to Ireland, Kevin O'Malley.
The new US Ambassador to Ireland, Kevin O'Malley.

THE NEW AMERICAN Ambassador to Ireland Kevin O’Malley said he is the envy of every Irish-American in the US.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Marian Finucane Show he said it is a thrill for him to be back in the land of his ancestors, where his grandparents left for Chicago over 100 years ago.

“I am the luckiest guy in the United States,” said O’Malley, who arrived in Ireland four days ago.

On Wednesday, as I stood on steps of your president’s home, looking over at the front of my new home, as they played my national anthem, it was everything I could do thinking of my grandparents and their courage and my Mom and Dad and their dedication, it was everything I could do not to tear up and cry, it was a very emotional experience for me.  

Business links

Speaking about his priorities in his new role, he said that growing business between the countries was top of his list.

However, when asked about the controversy between the US and Ireland over the “double Irish” tax code, he said he did not agree that it is just the US that facilitates it.

RTÉ’s Marian Finucane put it to the newly appointed ambassador that Ireland has taken a lot of criticism over tax avoidance of big US companies and that it is US tax laws that facilitates this, not Irish law.

“I don’t agree with that,” said O’Malley, who did admit that US tax laws are very “complex” and should be looked at.

He said that when tax codes were introduced for Ireland, the US and all the other countries, there was “little thought of the global economy”. O’Malley said that it is a totally different world than it was 50 years ago, where now Irish companies have partner companies in the US and other countries.

“We have to try and find some way to balance that out,” said O’Malley.

One of his priorities as the US ambassador is to encourage the business links between the two countries, but said the issue of tax would be a “subset” issue that would be looked at.

O’Malley said that President Obama and the US Government are for any business that has “real business activity, that creates real business jobs for real people”. However, he said Obama is “vigilant” for “brass plate financial transactions that just shift tax responsibility”

Source: U.S. Embassy Dublin/YouTube

Read: Ireland’s new US Ambassador met the President today>

Read: The US has finally approved a new ambassador to Ireland>

 

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