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Ireland's Response to 13 Billion Tax Order for Apple from the European Commission — Orbitax Tax News & Alerts

Ireland's Department of Finance has announced that it will appeal the recent decision of the European Commission that Ireland provided illegal State aid to Apple and must recover up to EUR 13 billion in unpaid taxes ({News-2016-08-31/A/2- previous coverage}). According to the press release, the Irish Minister for Finance Michael Noonan will seek Cabinet approval to appeal the Commission decision to the European Courts. Ireland has a period of two months and 10 days to bring an appeal.

As quoted in the announcement, the Minister for Finance has stated:

"I disagree profoundly with the Commission’s decision. Our tax system is founded on the strict application of the law, as enacted by the Oireachtas, without exception.

The decision leaves me with no choice but to seek Cabinet approval to appeal the decision before the European Courts. This is necessary to defend the integrity of our tax system; to provide tax certainty to business; and to challenge the encroachment of EU state aid rules into the sovereign Member State competence of taxation.

It is important that we send a strong message that Ireland remains an attractive and stable location of choice for long-term substantive investment. Apple has been in Ireland since the 1980s and employs thousands of people in Cork. The company has continued to expand its operations in Ireland in recent times."

In a separate release issued by Irish Revenue on the decision, Chairman of the Revenue Commissioners Niall Cody is quoted as saying, "While I cannot otherwise comment on the specific facts of this case, I can confirm that -

  • there was no departure from the applicable Irish tax law by Revenue;
  • there was no preference shown in applying that law; and
  • the full tax due was paid in accordance with the law."

Click the following links for the Department of Finance release and the Revenue release.