27 March 2011,

Reducing corporation tax for businesses will benefit the Northern Ireland economy despite losing millions of pounds from Westminster as a result, Secretary of State Owen Paterson has said.

Mr Patterson said the move would eventually prove to be beneficial.

“I think the sensible way to do this is to do what Canada did recently and phase things in,” he said.

“So if you went over five years, the cost for each drop of 2.5% in the corporation tax is actually £60-90m.

“Now £60m is 0.5% of the £12bn block grant so that is a very, very modest investment in what could be something which would create enormously more wealth and employment than that very marginal reduction in the block grant.”

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