The European Commission (EC) has released its report into tax deals between Apple and the Irish government, accusing the two of effectively having a ‘sweetheart’ deal.
The EC released the report having originally announced its investigation in June, when it set out to establish whether the Irish authorities have provided too favourable a regime to Apple, effectively amounting to state aid.
The report details how the Irish government is alleged to have set a tax threshold for Apple has far back as 1991, which was only reviewed again in 2007. This huge timeframe is far beyond the EU average of 3-5 years.
“The Commission is of the opinion that through those rulings the Irish authorities confer an advantage on Apple. That advantage is obtained every year and ongoing, when the annual tax liability is agreed upon by the tax authorities in view of that ruling.”
The EC report also noted that "all unlawful aid may be recovered from the recipient" which would mean Apple may have to back the 'state aid' it received from Ireland, which would run into the hundreds of millions.
The Irish government has denied any wrongdoing and said it is confident it can prove its actions were legal.
"Ireland welcomed that opportunity to clarify important issues about the applicable tax law in this case and to explain that the company concerned did not receive selective treatment and was taxed fully in accordance with the law," it said in a statement.
Apple denied any wrongdoing and said its tax payments had increased in line the success of the company since 2007.
"Apple has received no selective treatment from Irish officials over the years. We're subject to the same tax laws as the countless other companies who do business in Ireland," it said in a statement.
"Since the iPhone launched in 2007, our tax payments in Ireland and around the world have increased tenfold. To continue that growth and the benefits it brings to the communities where we work and live, we believe comprehensive corporate tax reform is badly needed."
The EU also asked Google to redraft its search concessions earlier in September for the fourth time, in an effort to curb its market dominance.
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