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Firms in fresh plea for tax cuts

17 December 07 07:28 GMT

Firms in Northern Ireland have made a fresh call for tax cuts as the government prepares to publish its Varney review into taxation later.

Members of the business community have been lobbying for a cut in the corporation tax to promote investment.

It is 12.5% in the Republic of Ireland, compared to NI's 30% top rate. But it is being reduced to 28% in April.

Campaigners have long argued NI's rate should be lowered to attract foreign investment and create more jobs.

In March, the former Chancellor Gordon Brown announced the 2% reduction in the 30% rate in April 2008, but this left many local firms disappointed as few pay the top rate.

The vast majority of the 60,000 local companies pay a lower rate of 19% which is being increased to 22% in 2009.

The Irish Republic's low corporation tax has been a key factor in its economic success.

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