Northern Ireland could set corporation tax from 2017

The bill that would permit corporation tax powers to be devolved to Northern Ireland has been published by the government.

The legislation will allow Northern Ireland to set its own rate of corporation tax from April 2017.
The government hopes that devolving the powers will increase Northern Ireland's competitiveness and attract more foreign investment.

Businesses in Northern Ireland currently pay the UK rate 21% corporation tax. This compares to 12.5% in the Republic of Ireland.

The government estimates that around 34,000 businesses in Northern Ireland would benefit if corporation tax was lowered.

Theresa Villiers, secretary of state for Northern Ireland, said:

"I am delighted the government has introduced this important bill today, as part of its implementation of the Stormont House Agreement.

"There is strong support for this change across all 5 of the parties in the Northern Ireland Executive and the business community who believe it would provide a major incentive for domestic businesses to invest further in Northern Ireland and significantly increase foreign direct investment."

The Chancellor George Osborne said:

"This will give the Northern Ireland Executive greater power to rebalance the economy towards a stronger private sector, boosting employment and growth."

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