Labour Party general election candidate for Roscommon/South Leitrim, Cllr. John Kelly, has questioned why a banking tax as gone off the national and European political agenda.
“A mini tax of only 0.05 percent on each financial transaction would make the financial sector pay for a crisis they created without having an impact on taxpayers,” explained Cllr. Kelly this week. “But the political will doesn’t seem to be there at the moment.
“The money generated could save the lives of millions of the world’s poorest people who are hit hardest by the crises the world is currently facing. A Financial Transaction Tax at a rate of 0.01 percent would, it has been estimated, generate income of about euro 100 billion per year in Europe alone.
“European leaders failed to agree on the introduction of a levy on financial trading to compensate taxpayers for bank bailouts in March, despite the backing of the European Parliament for such a move. However, since then, French President Nicolas Sarkozy has backed the idea and we must keep the concept on the political agenda. And what about that other ‘sacred’ cow – corporation tax?”
Domestically, Cllr. Kelly has also questioned this week why the current Government is hell-bent on keeping corporation tax at 12 percent. “Corporate Ireland got us into this mess but everyone says we can’t raise corporation tax. I don’t accept that. How about raising it by just one or two per cent – everyone has to contribute towards getting us out of this mess. We can’t be relying on the Irish taxpayer to bail everyone out, every sector has to help out, including big business,” said Cllr. Kelly.