Ulster Unionist Finance Spokesperson, Steve Aiken MLA, has warned that the long awaited reduction to a 12.5% rate of Corporation Tax is unlikely to proceed in light of the failure to form a functioning Northern Ireland Executive.
Steve Aiken said:
“The indication by InvestNI that the proposed implementation date of April 2018 for a reduction in Corporation Tax may be missed, is effectively confirmation that it will be.
“It was the Ulster Unionist Party who first proposed a reduction of the rate of Corporation Tax. We considered it an essential tool to stimulate Northern Ireland’s economic prosperity.
“The delay however is only the latest in a series of major blows to the proposed policy. For instance, the confirmation in the last Chancellor’s Autumn Statement that the UK Government will be reducing the rate of the UK’s Corporation Tax to 17%, further undermined the Executive’s primary economic policy of reducing the rate in Northern Ireland.
“The collapse of the Executive earlier this year and the disgrace of entering a financial year without having a Budget in place had already severely knocked investor confidence. Now having no functioning Government in place during the triggering of Article 50, with unelected officials having to admit that previous key Executive policies will be delayed, this is the latest in a long line of disgraces.
“It is absolutely imperative that a new Executive is formed. No longer is just the belligerent pride of the DUP and Sinn Fein at risk, their prevarication and politicking is having a detrimental impact on the Northern Ireland economy.”