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News : International Last Updated: Jul 10, 2014 - 6:10 AM


Wednesday Newspaper Review - Irish Business News and International Stories - - July 09, 2014
By Finfacts Team
Jul 9, 2014 - 12:25 PM

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Irish Independent

Fine Gael and Labour Party sources are both suggesting to independent.ie this morning that the reshuffle will not be until tomorrow.

The talks will resume later on today.

Ms Burton is in the Seanad today and Mr Kenny in the Dail for Leaders Questions.

The two leaders are also due to attend a meeting of the Economic Management Council later today.

Fine Gael sources said the atmosphere is quite good but indicated Mr Kenny was not yielding to Ms Burton's demands for Labour Cabinet positions.

"We're in no rush. Possession is nine tenths of the law," a source said.

Labour sources said the reshuffle was "likely" to be tomorrow.

For years, the 4,000 passengers travelling on 22 Aer Lingus flights a day between Ireland and Heathrow have grumbled about long walks, poor gate facilities and cramped conditions in Terminal 1.

As of today, it's all change.

Aer Lingus moved to its new home in Heathrow this morning, where passengers can look forward to shorter walking times – including a 50% reduction from gate to kerb, the airline says.
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From now on, all Aer Lingus flights to and from the airport will operate from Terminal 2, in a move that should prove a much more user-friendly experience for passengers.

AUSTERITY and budget discipline must be maintained in Europe, European Commission president-elect Jean-Claude Juncker has declared.

Mr Juncker - who was backed by German chancellor Angela Merkel for the top European job - said anybody who believes that budget austerity is finished is wrong.

And he also claimed that while he was a fan of tax competition, he would make sure that corporate taxation is based on a "harmonised tax base'', so that profits are taxed where they were made.
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Mr Juncker, who headed the euro group of finance ministers at the height of the crisis in the single currency, told a parliamentary hearing yesterday that "we need to keep austerity going''.

"I'm against excessive austerity, but budget discipline, yes,'' he told the Alliance for Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) grouping at a hearing in Brussels.

EXPLORATION firm Providence Resources has hit a set-back at its Spanish Point well, in the Northern Porcupine basin.

"The postponement of appraisal drilling at Spanish Point is regrettable and beyond the control of the partnership,” chief executive Tony O’Reilly said.

Due to delays to a refurbishment of the rig, Cairn Energy, the project operator, has decided to cancel the rig contract.
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As a result, anew tender process is underway for another with a 2015 drill programme.

The company said today that the planned 3D seismic programme will still go ahead.

“As the rig refurbishment delays became apparent, the operator evaluated various options to re-schedule the Blackford Dolphin rig and/or to secure another drilling unit for 2014, but this proved unsuccessful," Mr O'Reilly added.

Irish Times

The Bord Gáis Energy Theatre in the Dublin docklands, is to be offered for sale on the international market at over €20 million – a long way short of the €80 million spent on developing and launching it in 2010.

Commercial agent CBRE is handling the sale following Nama’s appointment of receivers Paul McCann and Stephen Tennent of Grant Thornton to the theatre company controlled by businessman Harry Crosbie. The original funding was provided by AIB.

Sean O’Brien of CBRE says the theatre will be seen as a “trophy asset” by theatre operators as well as local and international investors either wanting to capitalise on the improving economy or with an interest in diversifying their portfolios after heavy buying of office stock.

For the second time in 14 months Ireland’s corporate tax policy has faced critical public scrutiny, and attracted adverse international comment. Last year two members of a US Senate sub-committee claimed that Ireland was a tax haven that facilitated tax avoidance by multinational companies – specifically Apple. The charge was rejected by the Government, and dismissed by the company.

This week a US Congress report highlighted another American concern: the number of US companies that have moved their domicile overseas in order to lower their tax rate. Some 76 companies have done so since 1983, relocating their headquarters mainly to Ireland, the UK, the Netherlands and Switzerland. US companies have employed this strategy, known as corporate inversion, to acquire or merge with a foreign company, and so avoid paying America’s high – 35 per cent – tax rate. Some Irish-based companies, largely in the pharmaceutical sector, have been acquired in this way. Last March, President Barack Obama announced plans to stop corporate inversions by year-end, and to cut the US corporate tax rate.

There is increasing expectation that Jeroen Dijsselbloem may be named the European Commission’s next finance chief in the coming weeks, as Jean-Claude Juncker prepares to assign commissionerships to the EU’s 28 member states.

Speaking following his first appearance before the European Parliament’s Socialists and Democrats group in Brussels yesterday, Mr Juncker told the centre-left group that Olli Rehn’s successor as economics and monetary affairs commissioner is likely to be a socialist.

Asked if he was interested in the position following the Eurogroup meeting of euro zone finance ministers on Monday evening, the Dutch finance minister who is a member of the centre-left Labour Party in the Netherlands did not rule out the possible appointment.

Salix Pharmaceuticals, a US maker of drugs for gastrointestinal diseases, is to merge with Dublin-based Cosmo Technologies, in a deal aimed at lowering its US tax bill.

Under the deal, Salix will become a subsidiary of Cosmo, which will change its name to Salix Pharmaceuticals Plc.

The deal is the latest in a line of transactions by US companies aiming to gain an overseas address as a way of mitigating its tax rate. Last month Medtronic agreed to acquire Dublin-based Covidien, while AbbVie is currently bidding to purchase Dublin-based Shire Plc to execute a similar tax-inversion deal.

According to Salix, the merger “enhances Salix’s position as a leader in developing and marketing products in the US to treat gastrointestinal disease and disorders”. It also “establishes a tax efficient corporate structure and increases Salix’s competitive positioning for future M&A and product licensing efforts”. The company said the transaction will be “modestly accretive” to Salix’s earnings per share in 2016 and increasingly accretive thereafter.

Irish Examiner

The decision by the board of Trinity College to award a salary in excess of the agreed pay scale to the incoming professor of business studies has caused significant disquiet among current staff members, the Irish Examiner has learned.

The board approved a salary for the incoming Professor (who this newspaper has learned is Professor Andrew Burke of Cranfield University in Bedford, England) believed to be in the region of €185,000.

This figure is in excess of the agreed maximum pay limits.

This level of remuneration would represent a top-up payment of approximately €50,000, despite the suggestion that Mr Burke would not stand for election for head of the business school within the expected time-frame.

Europe

Euro Topics: Mobilisation just sabre-rattling: Israel won't dare to send in ground troops, the liberal-conservative Italian daily Corriere della Sera believes: "Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is no doubt facing his most difficult test to date. Although - unlike many of his predecessors - he is not a man of war, he has mastered the art of menace to perfection, but he avoids making decisions that could hurt Israel. In his efforts to oblige the far-right wing of his government, he has now apparently gone too far and concentrated all of his accusations and promises of revenge on Hamas, without distinguishing between fundamentalists and other even more violent extremist movements. ... Now he is getting a taste of the perfidies of power: he has mobilised 40,000 reserve soldiers. But he's too clever to believe he will really deploy them in a ground operation that could end in tragedy."

Tunnel construction won't help Finnish exports: Reacting to pressure from the social democratic Finance Minister Antti Rinne, the Finnish government agreed on additional investments for reviving the economy at the end of June. The focus of investments will be on infrastructure projects. That is not the right approach, the liberal Finnish daily Maaseudun Tulevaisuus believes: "Rinne is right that economic growth in Europe is important for employment and growth in Finland. But how investments in tunnel and railway construction are supposed to boost Finland's exports and competitiveness is another matter. Finland is not only struggling with lacking competitiveness but also with the disintegration of its industrial basis. Its industry needs to be strong when the European economy picks up again, because there are others who want to access these markets too."

Tragic betrayal of Brazil's football spirit: Brazil has betrayed its old football identity and paid a bitter price for it, the liberal-conservative Portuguese daily Diário de Notícias notes: "It seems impossible to find a word, an adjective, to describe the extent of Brazil's defeat. ... Brazil fell in front of its local fans just minutes after it had passionately sung the national hymn. Then came the goals, the astonishment, and finally the booing. ... Brazil did not play well in this World Cup. It couldn't because it retains nothing of its old identity. ... And the beating that followed was monumental. Brazil was crushed like an ant by its opponent, who judiciously controlled the ball, the pace and the space. That team was Germany, and its players were the only ones who respected the legacy of old Brazil."


© Copyright 2011 by Finfacts.com

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International
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