Double Taxation Treaties

Ireland has signed comprehensive Double Taxation Agreements with 74 countries. 73 agreements are in effect. The agreement with Ghana is not yet in effect. The agreements cover direct taxes which in the case of Ireland are:

  • Income Tax
  • Universal Social Charge
  • Corporation Tax
  • Capital Gains Tax.

Commentary on typical provisions of Irish tax treaties.

The following is a summary of the work underway to negotiate new double taxation agreements and to update existing agreements:

  • The new Double Taxation Convention with Ghana was signed on the 7 February 2018.  Procedures to ratify the Convention are underway. 
  • The new Double Taxation Agreement with Kazakhstan was signed on the 26 April 2017. The agreement entered into force on 29 December 2017 and into effect in Ireland on 1 January 2018.
  • Ireland has completed the ratification procedures to bring the Protocol to the existing Agreement with Belgium into force. When notification of the completion of ratification procedures by Belgium is received, the Protocol will enter into force.
  • Negotiations have concluded for new Double Taxation Agreements with:
    • Azerbaijan
    • Oman
    • Turkmenistan
    • Uruguay.
  • Negotiations have concluded on a Protocol to the existing Double Taxation Agreement with Mexico.
  • In addition to the negotiation of new treaties, the renegotiation of existing treaties is ongoing. Ireland’s existing treaty base will also be updated to incorporate provisions under the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent BEPS (MLI).

Plans to initiate negotiations for new Double Taxation Agreements with other countries during 2019 are ongoing.

Unilateral relief

Where Ireland does not have a double taxation agreement with a particular country or jurisdiction or a double taxation agreement does not cover a particular tax, the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 (TCA 1997) provides unilateral relief against double taxation in respect of certain types of income and gains:

  • dividends from foreign subsidiaries
  • foreign branch profits
  • foreign interest and royalties
  • leasing income
  • capital gains on foreign assets.

The principal provisions of TCA 1997 dealing with unilateral relief are contained in paragraphs 9A - 9H of Schedule 24

Additional reliefs

There are also reliefs under:

  • EU "Parent-Subsidiaries Directive" (90/435/EEC) (section 831 TCA 1997).
  • EU "Interest and Royalties Directive" (2003/49/EC) (section 267G-L TCA 1997).
  • "EU Mergers Directive" (90/434/EEC) (sections 630-638 TCA 1997).

The text of each agreement is available by clicking on the links below. Some treaties have been amended via subsequent Amending Protocols, the texts of which are also available by clicking on the links below.  In such cases, treaties and the Amending Protocols should be read together.