Tuesday, May 21, 2024

263 John Bruton
Chairman - IFSC Ireland

John Bruton is chairman of a newly-formed financial services promotion organisation, IFSC Ireland, formed in the summer of 2010 by the main organisations representing the 400 plus institutions in Ireland's international financial services centre (IFSC). He will act as an ambassador for Ireland as an international financial services centre. He takes up the position in Autumn 2010.

Bruton, a former Taoiseach (Prime Minister) of Ireland, was most recently European Union Ambassador to the United States, 2004 to 2009, (where he is succeeded by Ambassador Joao Vale de Almeida who presented his credentials to President Barack Obama, on August 10, 2010.)

Bruton served as Taoiseach of Ireland from 1994 to 1997. He was also Minister for Finance of Ireland (1981–1982 and 1986–1987), and Minister for Industry, Trade, Commerce and Tourism (1983–1986).

As Minister for Finance in the 1980s, Bruton introduced initial legislation that led to the establishment of the Irish IFSC in 1987. As Taoiseach, in the 1990s, his Government introduced Ireland's 12.5% corporation tax rate, a rate that remains one of the lowest in the world, and which remains a bugbear for international competitiors, including many within the European Union.

The Irish corporation tax rate remains, as a result, a key rallying point for debate in the EU and elsewhere about corporation tax levels, including the US, where it featured in the pre-election presidential debates between the Republican and Democratic nominees, John McCain and Barack Obama. Ireland secured an agreement from the EU that its' (and other member states') rights to set its corporation tax rate would be preserved in the Lisbon Treaty of 2009, following initial rejection of the Treaty in a referendum in Ireland.