EU Commission orders Ireland to recoup £11 billion from Apple over "sweetheart" tax deal

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Article
7 September 2016

Ireland: Natl. Action Plan should include commitment to support efforts to prevent global tax avoidance, says Irish Centre for Human Rights

Author: Shane Darcy, Business and Human Rights in Ireland

"A human rights based approach to corporation tax (and its avoidance)", 7 Sep 2016

...As part of the discussion on Ireland’s national action plan on business and human rights (which we still await), various submissions referred specifically to the issue of corporate tax avoidance...Christian Aid Ireland, who have been to the forefront of tax justice efforts, put it that “the Irish government should be in a strong position to lead on developing the link between tax, business and human rights. The National Action Plan should therefore address tax issues”. Sorely McCaughey, the organization’s head of advocacy, put the issue of Apple’s €13 billion tax avoidance in context last week...In its submission to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Irish Centre for Human Rights recommended that the national action plan “include a commitment to conduct an assessment of the human rights impact of Irish tax practices and to supporting and implementing efforts to prevent global tax avoidance”. FLAC and others have provided guidance on how to incorporate human rights in budgeting....

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Article
30 August 2016

Apple tax: EU orders firm to pay Ireland record £11bn penalty over 'sweetheart' deal

Author: Harry Cockburn, Independent (UK)

The European Commission has ordered Ireland to recoup 13 billion euros (£11bn) from Apple over a 'sweetheart' tax deal offered to the tech company. Following a three-year long investigation, the commission has concluded the tax arrangements between Ireland and the multinational tech firm are illegal. Ireland’s corporation tax rate is already relatively low at 12.5 per cent, but the commission said Apple’s tax deal meant the firm was paying an effective corporate tax rate of less than 1 per cent. Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: “Member States cannot give tax benefits to selected companies – this is illegal under EU state aid rules. The commission's investigation concluded that Ireland granted illegal tax benefits to Apple, which enabled it to pay substantially less tax than other businesses over many years...Apple said it will challenge the ruling, paving the way for an international political and financial dispute over the European Commission’s role and authority...In a defiant statement, the tech firm accused the European Commission of launching “an effort to rewrite Apple’s history in Europe” and “upend the international tax system”

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