McGlone presses case for Corporation Tax devolution with Villiers

SDLP MLA Patsy McGlone, has met with Secretary of State Theresa Villiers, to push for movement on the devolution of corporation tax.

As well as corporation tax. Mr McGlone, who is Chairman of the Assembly Enterprise, Trade and Investment Committee discussed a number of issues with the Secretary of State includng welfare reform and the Green Investment Bank.

Mr McGlone said: “Northern Ireland’s economy, if it is to pick itself up and regain its good standing, needs to grow its private sector and attract the kind of foreign direct investment that will allow our local business sector to begin to compete again.

“Key to that will be ensuring that we can compete on a level playing field with the South, who have rightly decided to keep their corporation tax low.

“Given our land border with that economy and given the other constraints put on the North, the only lever that we have open to us is the devolution of corporation tax – the Secretary of State now needs to turn fine words into solid action to expedite this as soon as possible, and at the most attractive rate,” said the Mid-Ulster MLA.

Mr McGlone also emphasised that action is taken to mitigate the impact on particularly small and medium-sized enterprises of the lower levels of disposable income.

He concluded: “While we have much of the power on these issues devolved, the overarching purse-strings are still held by Whitehall and it was essential that this morning’s meeting gave those of us on the ground the chance to speak truth to power in pursuit of a fair and economically sustainable settlement.”