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Press watch: ‘Northern Ireland corporate tax decision delayed’

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‘A decision on whether to devolve the right to set corporation tax rates to the Northern Ireland executive has been delayed until autumn 2014 over concerns in Westminster that it could influence the Scottish referendum on independence.

‘After talks with the prime minister at Downing Street on Tuesday, Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness, Northern Ireland’s first and deputy first minister, said they were “disappointed” by the decision …

‘Northern Ireland’s political parties and business community want to slash corporation tax rates to rebalance an economy devastated by 30 years of violence and compete with the Republic of Ireland, which has a rate of 12.5%. The UK rate, and hence that of Northern Ireland, of 24% will drop one percentage point next month. The executive says it wants at least to equal the Republic of Ireland’s rate or even to lower Northern Ireland’s to 10%.’

Financial Times, 27 March 2013