Ritchie Says Corporation Tax Powers Must Tackle Regional Imbalance

South Down MP Margaret Ritchie has called on the UK government to work with the Executive to ensure that the potential benefits of a devolved rate of corporation tax are delivered across Northern Ireland.

dn_screenSpeaking following Northern Ireland questions in Westminster, Ms Ritchie said: “It is important that full and proper scrutiny is given as the Corporation Tax Bill goes through the House of Commons. While it has the potential to unlock great gains for our local economy it cannot be a shortcut for tax avoidance or profit shifting. It is also crucial that it creates balanced regional investment opportunities, including for towns and rural areas in the South East and the North-West where there has been a history of under-investment.

“It is vital that we consider this in terms of the wider economy. A lower rate of Corporation tax on its own will not be enough and if it is not supported by wider reform of our economy the impact will be limited. We need a massive investment in training, education and skills to maximise the gains from the lower rate.

“We also need to ensure that companies are confident that they in investing in a sound, stable and secure Northern Ireland. We have a responsibility as politicians to work constructively to ensure this is the case.”