In the context of the recent international financial crisis, one principally derived from the reckless speculative behaviour of numerous banking and financial corporations, the long-term hesitancy towards a financial transactions tax (FTT) tax has begun to thaw.
Most recently the European Commission and Parliament have set in train a process to see a FTT introduced in a number of EU countries from 2014. The European proposal is far-reaching and will be difficult to avoid for financial institutions who wish to remain active in the implementing states or to trade EU issued financial assets. To date Ireland has been unwilling to support the FTT proposal. An EU wide FTT would give a net tax gain of between €300-550m per annum for Ireland. The gains are likely to be smaller, but positive, if Ireland but not the UK adopts the FTT.
The latest NERI Research inBrief entitled 'Time for Tobin: Ireland and the European Financial Transactions Tax Proposal' outlines the details of the European proposal and argues that Ireland has much to gain from an EU-wide FTT and should adopt a more assertive position in campaigning for it.