NUMBER OF TAX EXILES RISE BY 27% IN TWO YEARS - The number of people in Ireland who are non-resident for tax purposes increased by 27.15% between 2009 and 2011, according to information released by Minister for Finance Michael Noonan, writes the Irish Times. People who spend less than 183 days in Ireland during the tax year (January 1st to December 31st) are considered non-resident for tax purposes. This also applies to people who spend less than 280 days in Ireland over a period of two consecutive tax years. Mr Noonan, who released the information in reply to a parliamentary question, said it was likely a high proportion of those opting to become non-resident for tax purposes were doing so for non-tax reasons. He suggested the higher number of Irish people emigrating and taking up employment abroad was one possible explanation for the rise. In 2009 almost 10,300 people filed tax returns indicating that they were non-resident for tax purposes, according to figures provided by the Revenue Commissioners. This increased to 11,594 in 2010 and 13,093 in 2011, the most recent year for which information is available. The Department of Finance said the taxation of individuals in Ireland was “broadly in line with [that] prevailing in most other OECD jurisdictions”. It said it was not possible to ascertain the reasons for the increase.
GAYLE GETS €30,000 A MONTH FROM PROPERTY PORTFOLIO - The wife of bust developer Sean Dunne earns almost $40,000 (€30,000) a month from her property investments, the Irish Independent can reveal. New filings in Mr Dunne's US bankruptcy case suggest that former gossip columnist Gayle Killilea-Dunne earns as much as $475,000 (€355,800) a year from her new career as a property developer. The addition of his wife's earnings puts their combined average monthly income at $61,600 (€46,100). Her husband, who was once dubbed the Baron of Ballsbridge, is now bankrupt. He filed for bankruptcy in the US state of Connecticut in March, putting his debts at more than $942m (€730m). He was last month adjudicated bankrupt in the High Court here in Ireland as well, although he may appeal that ruling. Mr Dunne moved to Connecticut in 2010 along with Ms Killilea-Dunne after the collapse of his property empire here. She has since been involved in a series of development projects in the state, involving the construction of luxury houses. One of Mr Dunne's major creditors, NAMA, has claimed that these property deals were funded by assets fraudulently transferred by Mr Dunne to his wife, while his debts went unpaid. They have always denied the allegations.
VODAFONE ADMITS MOVING FOR TAX REGIME - Vodafone has admitted that the main reason it located its brand and marketing arm in Ireland was to benefit from the attractive tax regime, reports the Irish Examiner. The mobile phone company, who reclaimed €67m from the Revenue Commissioners that should have been paid in the UK, had originally identified Ireland specifically to collect revenue. “In 2001, Dublin was identified as a location for this activity on a number of grounds including the commercial, regulatory and tax environment in Ireland at that time and Vodafone began to use a Dublin-based subsidiary to collect royalties and brand management fees from operating companies and partners to fund the development of the Vodafone brand around the world,” a spokesperson said. It appears that Vodafone attempted to move staff to Ireland to try and take advantage of the lower rate of tax of 12.5% but failed to do so. A spokesperson for the Revenue Commissioners said that Ireland maintains a high level of tax for companies that set up offices and do not take on staff here, known as brass-plate companies. “Ireland does not encourage the establishment of brass-plate entities and our tax rules require that companies have substance in Ireland in order to qualify for the 12.5% rate of corporation tax. A higher 25% rate of corporation tax applies to passive/non-trading income. Multinational companies in Ireland employ more than 100,000 people directly with a further 250,000 indirect jobs,” the spokesperson said.
MINISTERS SET OUT UTOPIAN BUY HAZY VISION OF A STRONG FRANCE - France’s Socialist government has set out a gleaming vision of the future marked by full employment and cutting-edge factories thanks to “a third industrial revolution”, says the Financial Times. The France of tomorrow would be a safer place where justice was quicker and cheaper and where today’s stressful experience of finding affordable housing would be transformed into “a pleasant moment in one’s life”, cabinet ministers said on Monday. The vision, presented at a “France in 10 years’ time” seminar at the presidential palace, marked an end to the summer holidays before an official cabinet meeting on Wednesday and what is likely to prove a tough legislative agenda to follow. In a speech that ranged from social inclusion to global warming and industrial policy, President François Hollande said at the event that such a long-term vision was necessary because “a decade is time to bring about change”. Arguing that France was only just emerging from a “lost decade”, he added: “Europe needs a strong France and the world an influential France.” Part of that stronger country would involve increasing industry’s contribution to national production and helping the export sector. To that end, it was necessary “to simplify the state to make it stronger and quicker”.