Ireland May End Apple Tax Residency Loophole

Applelogo.pngIreland may shut down a tax loophole that allowed Apple to avoid declaring itself a tax resident in any country, reports The Street.

Apple, which currently has multiple subsidiary companies in the Irish city of Cork (Apple Operations International (AOI) Apple Operations Europe, Apple Operations, Apple Sales International and Apple Distribution International), is able to move money around the world without tax penalties because companies managed and controlled abroad but located in Ireland are not subjected to taxes.

"The second measure to be included in the Finance Bill is a change to our company residence rules aimed at eliminating mismatches – that can exist between tax treaty partners in certain circumstances – being used to allow companies to be ‘stateless’ in terms of their place of tax residence," the country said in a press release on Tuesday.

Subsidiary Apple Operations International has come under scrutiny in recent months for exploiting the loophole, as it has received billions of dollars between 2009 and 2011, but paid no taxes to any government. According to Apple’s own statement on the matter, AOI is incorporated in Ireland and therefore not a tax resident in the United States, but as it is controlled via the U.S., it does not meet the tax resident requirements in Ireland either.

According to Reuters, requiring companies to declare a tax residence will have little overall impact on Apple, as Ireland will allow companies to choose any country as a tax residence, including zero tax jurisdictions.

A spokesman for the Department of Finance declined to explain the change but denied it was due to U.S. pressure.

He added that companies could still nominate any country they liked as their tax residence, including zero tax jurisdictions such as Bermuda - a provision that tax advisers said was unusual internationally.

Earlier this year, Apple CEO Tim Cook testified in front of the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee of Investigation following an accusation that the company avoided paying billions in federal taxes via “extensive tax-avoidance strategies.”

During the hearing, Tim Cook insisted that Apple pays all of its taxes. "We pay all of the taxes we owe, every single dollar," he said. After an extensive investigation of Apple’s finances and disclosure practices concluded in September, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission opted not to take any action against the company.

Apple has said that it plans to use its extensive foreign cash pile to invest abroad, creating additional Apple Stores overseas, expanding its iTunes Store, and boosting its international marketing.

Top Rated Comments

CplBadboy Avatar
138 months ago
A multi billion dollar corporation should be paying ****in tax. Simple as that. Sheeple should understand they are taking the piss and realise that. We all pay tax and we get ripped off so why shouldnt Apple pay there dues? I like Apple dont get me wrong but when Im paying considerable taxes on my wages and they arent then its time to act. Its a question of fairness. Dont let fanboyism get in the road of that.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
The Mercurian Avatar
138 months ago
Our nation is broke so "lets tax Apple Inc."
Should not all companies pay tax ?
Fact is Apple paid only 2% tax on 100million. The Irish corporate tax rate is 12.5% - lower than most of Europe. Apple, Amazon, Starbucks, Google and others have manipulated international laws to avoid tax. This needs to stop.

Ireland stepping up to the plate. What are the rest of the countries doing ?
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NutsNGum Avatar
138 months ago
It could backfire. Ireland needs all the jobs it can get. While it might close some loopholes, they should be careful not to penalize companies with significant operations there.

It's not penalising to prevent large corporations taking the piss out of the tax system.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NOTmacbookpro13 Avatar
138 months ago
Our nation is broke so "lets tax Apple Inc."

Are you for real? We have the lowest corporation tax rate in Europe. Don't add to a discussion when you don't know anything about it.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Rocco83 Avatar
138 months ago
I really wish Apple has to start paying all that tax to the US and even has to pay back taxes to the US so our government can use it for wage increases for president, congress, and house members as they are doing such a wonderful job.

What money is left over can go into a fund the government can use to help create more technology and software to intrude into its citizen's lives.

I know that money would be much better in the hands of our government rather than waiting in the banks of a company like Apple that may very well be used to pay for the R&D of a revolutionary new piece of tech.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bbeagle Avatar
138 months ago
And what about Google's avoidance of UK tax by "negotiating" advertising deals in the UK and "completing" the sales in Eire?
Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Oracle, Adobe .... all use the same scheme in Ireland as Apple does to avoid taxes.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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