Finance Minister announces ‘Connect2’ project

Reacting to the announcement of the ‘Connect2’ project from the Finance Minister, which will create up to 10 regional hubs for civil servants across Northern Ireland, Conor Dowds, Co-Chair of the Cross-Border Workers Coalition (CBWC) has said today:


“The Cross Border Workers Coalition (CBWC) welcomes the announcement of the ‘Connect2’ project. The creation of these regional hubs will give civil service staff more flexible working arrangements and illustrates a growing trend towards remote work accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic. For those living outside Belfast, the opportunity of ‘blended’ working arrangements, where you can work from home one day and go to a co-working space on another, will be very attractive.” 

“However, due to restrictive personal tax liability rules in the Republic of Ireland, cross-border workers who live in the Republic and work in NI will be left behind and unable to gain the significant benefits of ‘blended’ working arrangements. If a Donegal-based civil servant, for example, attends a regional hub in Derry four days a week, but works from home on a Friday, under current RoI legislation he/she could be taxed twice on their income.”

“For these regional hubs to fully accommodate the ‘new normal’ of post-pandemic working practices, these restrictive personal tax laws in the Republic must change. On Wednesday 16 February we sent a letter requesting to meet with Irish Finance Minister Donohoe to examine current remote working tax legislation in the Republic. We now ask Finance Minister Murphy to work with his southern counterpart to ensure that cross-border workers are not left behind in this welcome project.”