The Republic of Ireland is known throughout the world for attracting foreign investment through its low corporation tax rate, which now stands at 12.5%. Northern Ireland, by contrast, follows the UK-mandated 20% rate. Not surprisingly, Northern Ireland has struggled in recent years to woo foreign direct investors away from its closest neighbor.Provided that certain political hurdles can be overcome, competition between the two border countries for foreign investment may become more balanced over the next few years after the introduction of new tax legislation.
The United Kingdom, with its affluent domestic market, highly educated workforce, and a shared language, is among the most popular destinations for American businesses expanding overseas. But right next door, Ireland offers those same advantages along with an aggressively pro-business government and a favorable tax structure.