Why is Ireland becoming a hotspot for all business great and small?
Ireland is slowly emerging as one of the most popular countries for setting up new and expanding existing businesses. Successful, highly respected companies like Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Pfizer, Abbott, and Intel are among the many that have started Irish operations at full tilt.
Following are several of the various factors, which make Ireland such an attractive location:
- Jobs and talent:
Being a member of the European Union and Eurozone enables for Ireland a mobile workforce which can traverse easily through all parts of the EU with utmost efficiency. Ireland provides a special tax relief programme called SARP (Special Assignee Relief Programme) for employees who relocate there. Ireland also happens to be the only English speaking country in the Eurozone helping to make it a hub for foreign students to learn and grow. Ireland has been ranked 1st for education on a global level. About 50% of the population between 25 and 34 are third level qualified, whereas 55% of the workforce is below the age of 35 years.
2. Low corporate tax rates:
Due to its low tax rates, Ireland has been attracting numerous foreign companies to set up operation centres. More than 1000 multinational companies have selected Ireland as their Europe headquarters due to the 12.5% corporate tax rate which happens to be the lowest in the world. The 25% tax credit against research and development costs, benefits makes research funding go much farther for multinational companies. The Ireland also has tax treaties with 72 countries to prevent double taxation.
3. Benefits of IP Exploitation:
Ireland’s concept of ‘smart economy’ is facilitated by the Irish government. It offers myriad tax incentives for organizations with respect to intangible assets in the country making it a favourable location for organizations to invest in Intellectual Property. Some benefits of IP investments include:
- Knowledge Development Box incentive can potentially bring down the tax rate on qualifying profits to 6.25%
- Favorable amortisation treatment for IP acquired for trade purpose
4. Economy and Innovation:
Steady growth of 2.5-3% per annum makes the Irish economy one of the fastest growing in the world. The inflation rate is well below the EU average coupled with ever-increasing productivity strongly supports export growth. Another factor which works well for the country is the world-class teamwork/collaboration between leading scientists and industry researchers.
5. Company Benefits:
The country has earned a reputation for being a sought-after establishment for international holding companies for a variety of reasons some of which are stated as follows:
- Extensive domestic withholding tax exemptions
- No thin capitalisation/CFC rules
- Tax exemption for Irish dividends with effective tax exemption for foreign dividends (FTCs)
- Tax exemption for domestic and foreign gains (EU & DTA) on sales of trading subsidiaries
In summation Ireland has provided the underpinning for a strong business platform catering to large and small corporations. The combination of available, highly skilled, highly mobile talent; one of the most advantageous global tax structures; the particular incentives aimed at stimulating IP development all combine to make Ireland a highly advantageous place to do business.
And guess what? It’s moderate climate, friendly people, low cost of living, and logistical infrastructure also make it a fine pace to live.