Ireland

Overview

Last reviewed - 04 February 2020

The island of Ireland is situated in Northwest Europe and is approximately 20 kilometres from Great Britain at its nearest point. The total area of the island is 84,421 square kilometres of which Northern Ireland (politically part of the United Kingdom) comprises 14,139 square kilometres, with the remainder constituting an independent parliamentary democracy called Ireland. Ireland has a population of approximately 4.635 million people, with the greatest concentration being on the east and south coasts. The capital of Ireland is Dublin. Its official languages are Irish and English. Business is conducted in English, and the currency is the euro (EUR).

Ireland is a parliamentary democracy. The basic law of the country is contained in the Constitution of Ireland, adopted in 1937 and amended on a number of occasions since then by public referenda. The Constitution sets out the fundamental rights of the citizen, the form of government, and the powers of the government. It also defines the system of courts and regulates the appointment of the judiciary. The national parliament consists of the president and two houses: a house of representatives (Dáil Éireann) and a senate (Seanad Éireann). The President is Head of State only and does not have executive functions. Executive power is exercised by the Prime Minister (Taoiseach) and the cabinet, while the power of making laws rests with parliament.

The political environment is stable and has, over recent decades, been dominated by parties of a centre or a centre right persuasion. Ireland is a member of the European Union (EU) and is also a member of most major international organisations but retains a neutral stance on military matters.

Government economic policies are directed towards the creation of a stable economic environment that is supportive of the needs of business. In the 2019 Index of Economic Freedom, Ireland was ranked sixth in the world and second in the European Union. Ireland was also ranked as the 15th most globalised nation in the world in the Globalization Index 2018. Ireland was voted the most effective country in Europe, and the fourth most effective in the world, to pay taxes in, according to Paying Taxes 2019 - The Global Picture (World Bank, IFC, & PwC). This report covers 189 countries worldwide and looks at all taxes paid by businesses, using broad principles from PwC’s Total Tax Contribution Framework.

Ireland was ranked 11th in Forbes 2019 list of Best Countries for Business. Ireland was among the top rankings for monetary freedom, low tax burden, investor protection, and personal freedom.

Over the last four decades, Ireland has continually invested and reinvested to meet the requirements of a growing and sophisticated international business sector. Today, Ireland is one of the most favoured locations for investment in Europe. Site Selection ranked Ireland number one per capita in Western Europe in its 2019 Best to Invest rankings. According to IBM’s 2018 Global Location Trends Annual Report, Ireland continues to hold the top ranking destination for 'added value' of foreign direct investment (FDI) projects for the seventh year in a row. This shows that companies are looking at structural factors, such as a favourable business environment, skills availability, and cluster/sector strengths, when deciding where to invest rather than cyclical phenomena, such as short-term economic growth prospects or fiscal deficits. This can be seen by the fact that over 1,000 companies from all over the world have chosen Ireland as their base to do business and that FDI in Ireland increased significantly in recent years, despite global economic uncertainty. Ireland has welcomed investment from a wide range of business sectors, including electronics and engineering, pharmaceuticals and healthcare products, technology and computer software, financial services, and a range of internationally traded services. Ireland has one of Europe’s most comprehensive legal frameworks for the protection of intellectual property (IP) rights.

The continued success of Ireland as an investment location has been founded on the positive approach of successive Irish governments to the development of businesses. This approach has ensured a favourable tax environment; competitive operating costs; a productive, well-educated, and flexible workforce; and a well-developed infrastructure with world-class support services. Ireland is ranked seventh in the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2019 in its measure of overall competitiveness. IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2019 also ranked Ireland third for business efficiency and sixth for economic performance.

PwC is the largest professional services firm in Ireland. We employ close to 3,000 professionals in seven locations, which are Dublin, Cork, Galway, Kilkenny, Limerick, Waterford, and Wexford.

PwC Ireland provides integrated audit, tax, and advisory services across all industries in Ireland and internationally. As Ireland's leading tax practice, with approximately 600 tax professionals around the country, PwC Ireland offers a broad range of tax services, including business taxation, transactions, transfer pricing, international tax structuring, value-added tax (VAT), customs, tax management, tax compliance, research and development (R&D) tax relief, personal tax advisory and compliance, human resource tax services, and tax audit support.

Quick rates and dates

Corporate income tax (CIT) rates
Headline CIT rate (%)

Trading corp.: 12.5;

Non-trading corp.: 25

Corporate income tax (CIT) due dates
CIT return due date

Within nine months after the end of the tax accounting period.

CIT final payment due date

Within nine months after the end of the tax accounting period.

CIT estimated payment due dates

Small companies: first instalment is due 31 days before the end of the tax accounting period*, and final instalment is due when the tax return is filed;

Large companies: first instalment is due six months from the start of the tax accounting period*, second instalment is due 31 days before the end of the tax accounting period*, and final instalment is due when the CIT return for the period is filed.

* No later than the 23rd day of the month.

Personal income tax (PIT) rates
Headline PIT rate (%)

40

Personal income tax (PIT) due dates
PIT return due date

31 October (mid-November if filed electronically) following the year-end.

PIT final payment due date

31 October following the year-end.

PIT estimated payment due dates

31 October in that year.

Value-added tax (VAT) rates
Standard VAT rate (%)

23

Withholding tax (WHT) rates
WHT rates (%) (Div/Int/Roy)

Resident: 0 / 20 / 20;

Non-resident: 25 / 20 / 20

Capital gains tax (CGT) rates
Corporate capital gains tax rate (%)

33

Individual capital gains tax rate (%)

33

Net wealth/worth tax rates
Headline net wealth/worth tax rate (%)

NA

Inheritance and gift tax rates
Inheritance tax rate (%)

33

Gift tax rate (%)

33

NA stands for Not Applicable (i.e. the territory does not have the indicated tax or requirement)

NP stands for Not Provided (i.e. the information is not currently provided in this chart)

All information in this chart is up to date as of the 'Last reviewed' date on the corresponding territory Overview page. This chart has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only, and does not constitute professional advice. You should not act upon the information contained in this chart without obtaining specific professional advice. No representation or warranty (express or implied) is given as to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in this chart, and, to the extent permitted by law, PwC does not accept or assume any liability, responsibility or duty of care for any consequences of you or anyone else acting, or refraining to act, in reliance on the information contained in this chart or for any decision based on it.