Feeds

Ireland accused of giving Apple 'selective advantage'

EU launches probe to ponder tax naughtiness by Cupertino, Starbucks and Fiat

Boost IT visibility and business value

The European Commission will investigate The Republic of Ireland's handling of Apple's tax affairs, after raising concerns that discretion available to the nation's tax authorities “... has been used in the case of Apple to grant a selective advantage to that company, reducing its tax burden below the level it should pay based on a correct application of the tax rules.”

The Commission says it has already looked at Apple's affairs in Ireland, plus Starbucks' activities in The Netherlands and Fiat footling in Luxembourg. After it “reviewed the calculations used to set the taxable basis in those rulings” a “preliminary analysis” found “concerns that they could underestimate the taxable profit and thereby grant an advantage to the respective companies by allowing them to pay less tax.”

The Commission yesterday issued a canned announcement describing the probe as “an in-depth investigation” that “gives interested third parties, as well as the three Member States concerned, an opportunity to submit comments.”

“It does not prejudge the outcome of the investigation.”

The statement says it is motivated by possible favours being handed out by some European nations, as “... national authorities cannot take measures allowing certain companies to pay less tax than they should if the tax rules of the Member State were applied in a fair and non-discriminatory way."

That makes the probe an exercise in considering how Ireland, Luxembourg and The Netherlands behaved, and whether their actions made a mess of EU competition law, rather than a probe into the vendors concerned.

Apple and Ireland will be probed to test whether “the individual rulings issued by the Irish tax authorities on the calculation of the taxable profit allocated to the Irish branches of Apple Sales International and of Apple Operations Europe” were appropriate, and whether Ireland chose to be kinder to Apple than is strictly required by local and EU law.

No timeframe for delivery of a judgement has been named. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.