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Tax loopholes expose issues with the system

The government and establishment's spin machine has gone into overdrive to try to defend the tax regime in this country.

There has been an argument put forward that the Apple tax was not due to be paid in Ireland in the first place.

However, successive governments in this country have built a tax regime based on low rates, no regulation and loopholes.

They have advertised Ireland abroad as a tax haven and have now been called out on it. The winners of so-called tax competition are major corporations - the losers are public services and working people right around the world.

The establishment are now putting up a defence in the Apple case, but their longer term objective is to defend the 12.5% corporation tax rate which is in itself a myth. The Apple case exposes that when loopholes are taken into account companies pay much less than that.

Now, we should take the €13 billion owed by Apple, use it to resolve some of the urgent social crises that we face. Then we need to build a different socialist model of development - based on public investment, democratic public ownership and planning for people's needs instead of corporate greed.

Mick Barry TD

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