Thursday, 23 November 2006
Department of Foreign Affairs
Question 28: To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will support the campaign to have corporation tax in Northern Ireland reduced to parity with the Republic of Ireland; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39591/06]
A clear case has been made, including by Northern business people and the political parties, that lowering Northern Ireland's corporation tax rate would help to stimulate growth in the Northern economy. This is, of course, a matter for the British Government in the first instance. Any such proposal may also have to be considered in the context of EU rules.
I particularly welcome the fact that the Northern Ireland political parties, together, are pursuing this issue actively with the British Government. I also warmly welcome the level of engagement among the political parties to address the economic challenges facing Northern Ireland.
The Government is convinced that stronger economic growth in Northern Ireland can only be of benefit to all citizens on the island, North and South, and we are, of course, strongly supportive of measures which will foster such growth.