Ten years ago Dublin was nicknamed Silicon Valley’s “home from home” with tech superstars including Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk queueing up to snap up office space, avail themselves of local Irish hospitality and low tax.
But while the decision of Google, Facebook, Yahoo, LinkedIn, eBay, Amazon and more recently TikTok to locate their European headquarters in the Irish capital helped cement its reputation as one of the region’s leading tech hubs, questions are now being asked about whether they will stay.
Earlier this month Ireland signed up to landmark reforms for a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15%, up from the current level of 12.5% set by Dublin, in the biggest shifts for the country’s tax system in almost 20 years.
Some analysts argued the nation’s economic model could be badly undermined, while the Irish finance minister, Paschal Donohoe, said earlier this year that up to €2bn (£1.7bn) a year in tax revenue could be lost by 2025. However, there are hopes the changes might not prove as existential as they first seem.
“In the short to medium term, no, there won’t be an exodus, the change from 12.5% to 15% is not that significant,” said Seamus Coffey, an economist at University College Cork and former chair of the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council.
Ireland had played hardball in global tax talks taking place between 140 countries at the OECD in Paris, following almost a decade of failure among world leaders to agree reforms that would equip the…