A very interesting exchange between Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande talking at a public venue, as reported by the EUObserver : http://euobserver.com/political/118795
In particular, consider the following quote:
"When asked if it is "utopian" to think that one day there would be a federal EU state, Hollande said that the EU as it is today seemed "utopian" 50 years ago. "I accepted that we need to converge towards common budgetary policies. We need to have a similar discussions about taxes, for instance a common CO2 tax. It's true there are political risks, but we need to embrace our common destiny," he said.
"Merkel named Ireland, Malta and Cyprus as low-corporate tax havens: "I don't want to make a statement now that my fellow EU leaders will be upset about, but step by step we'll need to establish margins and then each country will have to choose how it fits in those margins. Your utopia is totally right.""
No comment needed.
Update: 9/2/2013: Here's another link on Apple use of Irish legal structures to reduce tax exposures in the US. And another one.
Update 10/2/2013: UK MNC Associated British Foods is implicated in tax minimisation scheme involving Ireland: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/09/zambia-sugar-empire-tax