Letters to the Editor: Reform tax so poorer states can reap benefit

Letters to the Editor: Reform tax so poorer states can reap benefit

Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (left) with Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe during their meeting, as finance ministers from across the G7 nations, meet at Lancaster House in London ahead of the G7 leaders' summit. Picture: Alberto Pezzali/PA Wire

While much of the media attention on the G7 has focused on how Ireland will respond to recent changes proposed by the G7 to put forward a minimum corporate tax rate (June 8, Irish Examiner), it is important to turn our attention to how the global taxation system disproportionately harms developing countries.

According to the IMF, developing countries lose between $200bn (€165bn) and $300bn in tax revenues every year — far more than they receive in aid. Those ‘lost’ funds could be available to governments to provide essential services such as clean water, healthcare, education and the many other services we take for granted.

We applaud the recognition by the G7 that tax havens need to be made obsolete and that the right to tax profits ought to be fairly distributed across countries. However, we view the G7’s announcement merely as a possible starting point towards essential reform to a fairer, more progressive, international tax system — one that would allow developing countries to properly tax the companies that operate and generate profits in their countries.

As it stands, the main beneficiaries of the proposed new rules for a global minimum corporate tax rate of ‘at least’ 15% are the very same G7 countries — the world’s richest countries, where most of the world’s multinational companies are based. This means that the benefits for the world’s poorest countries are marginal.

Irish people are renowned for their humanitarian values and global solidarity. In a time of unprecedented health and economic crises, it has never been more imperative that everyone — including huge multinational companies — pay their fair share so that countries can rebuild and recover.

In the words of the Global Alliance for Tax Justice (2021 Nobel Peace Prize nominees): “There is no enduring peace without social justice and no social justice without tax justice.”

Siobhán McGee

ActionAid Ireland

Parnell Square

Dublin 1

World Ocean Day won’t save the fish

What is the point of World Ocean Day?

If people care about the oceans, we must stop treating the fishes as a commodity, and stop hunting them and destroying their ecosystems.

No amount of #worldoceanday memes will make a difference unless we leave sea creatures alone.

I have an awful vision of teams of people out doing litter picks at seasides and then celebrating by buying takeaway almost-extinct fish and chips in a polystyrene carton and feeling good about how they are helping ocean conservation because the internet memes and media tell them they are doing what’s right. But it’s not right.

Maybe one day we will stop trying to salve our consciences with a sometime-in-the-future-we-will-conserve-a-small-percentage-of-the-ocean goal and start making real changes today. We don’t have time and nor do the fishes.

Ruby, age 13



St Peter's Square, in the Vatican. Canon Law edicts have left many of the faithful baffled. Picture: Antonio Masiello/Getty Images)
St Peter's Square, in the Vatican. Canon Law edicts have left many of the faithful baffled. Picture: Antonio Masiello/Getty Images)

Vatican has strayed far from the stable

Fergus Finlay’s excellent column is hard for any Christian to read. The latest salvo from the Vatican on Canon Law has some very frayed fuses. Excommunication (no less) for those who deign to ordain women priests. Child sexual abuse to be governed by the sixth commandment.

This baffling codology is solemnly decorated with magical medieval language and the shining tinsel of modern legalistic guff.

God gave sole custody of His only son to a woman for our saviour’s first nine months on Earth and nowhere in the Bible is the ordination of female priests forbidden.

As for the sixth commandment, adults enjoy adultery while children enjoy infancy. One expects the Vatican’s high intellectual magisterium to be capable of separating the two.

Child sexual abuse is simple to describe — an abomination, a word the Catholic Church throws around like confetti in other areas.

Finally, nothing at all in Canon Law on the subject of finance. After all, the Vatican is basically a bank with the hoarding incense of high finance smouldering in its thurible. How far from the stable it has strayed while, all over the world, the rank and file of our Catholic clergy continue to do their best.

Michael Deasy


Co Donegal

Pitch no place for political displays

The practice of ‘taking the knee’, as adopted by the Irish soccer team, continues to be controversial.

Uefa has already in place a protocol called ‘Respect’, which it promotes across many platforms and is signified on the pitch by the wearing of the logo on the players’ jerseys.

This was the statement adopted by the host team, Hungary, and no further gesture other than the Uefa one was necessary.

Arbitrary pitch displays, as decided on by football players, that intrude into what are properly sociopolitical affairs, are best left outside the stadium. Players themselves may feel obliged into making such displays at the risk of adverse comment from a strong social-media lobby. In Ireland, we have had controversies about the wearing of poppies and Easter lilies on jerseys, and the Fifa/Uefa line against the practice was properly adhered to in those cases.

Teams that go outside governing body protocols in making pitch gestures are unwittingly placing themselves in the sphere of influence of many non-sport lobbies. However worthy these campaigns may be to some, I suggest it is better that they be promoted elsewhere and allow footballers to play football.

Yours in sport,

Ted Neville

Carrigaline Rd



Irish unity could bankrupt us

Official figures from the North now show that no less than 37.7% of total Covid spend in NI to date — £2.3bn (€2.7bn) of £6.1bn — has not been from Stormont budgets (which are already massively subsidised by GB taxpayers), but from Westminster.

So who in the Republic needs ‘unity’?

Or do we really want to end up bankrupt?

And for what? Poots in Cabinet?

Tom Carew


Dublin 6

Reckless spending on printing

With reference to an article in your paper dated June 9, I wish to say I am not surprised, but I am very angry at the ongoing waste of public money by the Government.

This latest squandering of taxpayers’ money to provide printing facilities to TDs and senators, at a cost of €700,000 is beyond reckless considering they have already spent €1m on a printer in recent times for this same purpose.

It seems to me that this Government especially has no respect whatsoever for the electorate.

With growing numbers of our citizens having to sleep on the streets and the health services almost non-existent, spending money recklessly on this luxury for themselves, without providing for these two obvious necessities is akin to thumbing their noses at the people.

Sheelagh Hanly

Carrick on Shannon

Co Roscommon

High standards of Irish peacekeepers

Captain Donal Buckley (Letters, Irish Examiner, June 8), states: “Censuring Israel was bad for our troops on the ground.” He also added that he considers this “betrayal of our military and families”. Captain Buckley is entitled to his view.

Before the United Nations deploy personnel to any region, host government(s) are required to give assurances on safety and security of all UN personnel, in addition to co-operation.

I believe the state of Israel will honour its commitments to the UN.

I spent more than 30 years with UN peace-keeping operations and can attest to the high standards of professionalism demonstrated by members of Irish Defence Forces in peace-keeping operations.

Michael A Moriarty



 The flotilla trawlers and fishing boats during their recent protest in Cork Harbour. Picture; David Creedon / Anzenberger
The flotilla trawlers and fishing boats during their recent protest in Cork Harbour. Picture; David Creedon / Anzenberger

EU not to blame for fishing policy

In his letter of June 8, Robert Sullivan declares that the problem in relation to “Irish coastal fishing rights has nothing to do with Brexit and everything to do with EU policy”.

The fishing policy for the UK and Ireland was negotiated by both countries with the EEC [what is now the EU] in the early 1970s.

It remained the same until the UK voted for Brexit and tore it up.

The UK then negotiated the hardest of hard Brexits.

Blaming ‘EU diktat’ for that, as Robert Sullivan is doing, does not accord with the facts.

A Leavy


Dublin 13

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