Ireland's finance minister said the country would not be the "whipping boy" for what he called a flawed U.S. Senate report that said Irish loopholes helped technology giant Apple shrink its tax bill.

Ireland has been forced to defend its corporate tax rate after the Senate said on Monday that Apple paid little or no tax on tens of billions of dollars in profits channelled through Irish subsidiaries and that it had negotiated a special corporate tax rate of less than 2 percent.

While a cabinet colleague acknowledged on Wednesday that there needed to be a clampdown on multinationals shifting profits around the world to avoid tax, Michael Noonan went on the attack, telling senators they had got their sums wrong.