EU apple taxFrance and Germany are looking to stop tech companies like Apple from exploiting tax loopholes in their respective countries. The loopholes are said to have allowed Apple to "minimize taxes and grab market share" at the expense of Europe-based companies.

France will draft and propose a list of "simpler rules" that will be aimed at creating a "real taxation" law for non-European companies, which also include Amazon and Facebook (via Bloomberg).

The new rules will be looked at in September during a meeting of European Union officials, which French finance minister Bruno Le Maire hopes will help speed up Europe-wide initiatives related to properly taxing international companies. Germany is said to be looking into similar proposals following its national election on September 24.

French President Emmanuel Macron is one of the leaders behind the tax crackdown on international tech companies, with a goal of bringing a more unified corporate tax system across the nineteen euro area states.

The clampdown on tech firms is part of President Emmanuel Macron’s muscular approach to ensuring a level playing field, after seeing first hand during his election campaign how French firms struggle to compete with countries where taxes and social security payments are lower.

“Europe must learn to defend its economic interest much more firmly -- China does it, the U.S. does it,” French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said. “You cannot take the benefit of doing business in France or in Europe without paying the taxes that other companies -- French or European companies -- are paying.”

In similar news, last year the European Commission ruled that Apple received illegal state aid from Ireland and ordered the company to pay $14.5 billion in back taxes. Apple admitted that it expects the case to continue for several years, and eventually appealed the decision in December of 2016 by arguing the European Commission made "fundamental errors" in its ruling.

If the new crackdown on tax loopholes goes into effect, Apple could potentially face more tax avoidance charges, which company CEO Tim Cook called "total political crap" in the wake of the Ireland-related ruling. In an open letter around the same time, Cook said that Apple has become "the largest taxpayer in the world," stating that the company "follows the law and we pay all the taxes we owe." He called the European Commission's ruling an "effort to rewrite Apple's history in Europe," and said that any claim that Ireland gave Apple a "special deal" on taxes "has no basis in fact or in law."

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Top Rated Comments

VulchR Avatar
64 months ago
Good. I don't care of tax avoidance is legal or not - legal or not tax avoidance is loathsome and immoral. What I do care about is that the rich and the corporations seem to wiggle out of a reasonable effective tax rate while public services are being stretched to the limit. It's time for them to pay their fair share, for otherwise the economy and indeed our culture will not be sustainable.
[doublepost=1502116731][/doublepost]
What European country has developed tech products that have been by Apple?

This is a money grab and those two countries should worry about their policies that have led to terrorism.
really? What does tax evasion/avoidance have to do with terrorism other than it creates a way for terrorists to hide their money in offshore tax havens?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
576316 Avatar
64 months ago
Yeah like companies paying tax in the countries the product was sold in, not siphoning profits through a lower tax country. Like how Apple bill all sales through Ireland for less tax - they shouldn’t be able to do that. English sale = English tax on that sale.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Plutonius Avatar
64 months ago
Finding loopholes is not tax evasion.

All as the countries have to do is change their tax laws to eliminate loopholes.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
VulchR Avatar
64 months ago
Following tax rules (loopholes or tax avoidance) is not immoral. These companies have teams of tax lawyers that comb through these tax rules to make sure they pay not one cent more or less then they have to. There is NOTHING immoral or loathsome about that. Immoral would be me screwing my sister. That is immoral.

I have no problem if these countries want to change tax rules but blame should be placed on these governments that designed the tax rules in the first place and not the companies that follow them. If these companies are evading taxes then by all means prosecute them. Other then last years EU commission flawed, vague ruling that took them 3 years to come up with against Apple which most likely won't hold water in court, these governments have failed to prove any tax evasion.
No need to bring your sister into this... o_O

It is immoral to use the infrastructure and public services of a country but not contribute to their upkeep. Moreover, not only is it immoral but it is unsustainable.
[doublepost=1502120039][/doublepost]
The rich pay most of the taxes
Yes, they do. However, the portion of taxes they pay is not commensurate with the proportion of wealth that they own.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
edk99 Avatar
64 months ago
Good. I don't care of tax avoidance is legal or not - legal or not tax avoidance is loathsome and immoral. What I do care about is that the rich and the corporations seem to wiggle out of a reasonable effective tax rate while public services are being stretched to the limit. It's time for them to pay their fair share, for otherwise the economy and indeed our culture will not be sustainable.
Following tax rules (loopholes or tax avoidance) is not immoral. These companies have teams of tax lawyers that comb through these tax rules to make sure they pay not one cent more or less then they have to. There is NOTHING immoral or loathsome about that. Immoral would be me screwing my sister. That is immoral.

I have no problem if these countries want to change tax rules but blame should be placed on these governments that designed the tax rules in the first place and not the companies that follow them. If these companies are evading taxes then by all means prosecute them. Other then last years EU commission flawed, vague ruling that took them 3 years to come up with against Apple which most likely won't hold water in court, these governments have failed to prove any tax evasion.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Tapiture Avatar
64 months ago
I’ll be cheering from the sidelines. It’s ridiculous how this huge tech companies like Apple and Google are somehow above the law. In order for an economy to thrive, a quarter of corporate profits have to be handed over, and these tech giants are paying way less than everyone else.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

top stories 2jul2022

Top Stories: M2 MacBook Air Release Date, New HomePod Rumor, and More

Saturday July 2, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
The M2 MacBook Pro has started making its way into customers' hands and we're learning more about how it performs in a variety of situations, but all eyes are really on the upcoming M2 MacBook Air which has seen a complete redesign and should be arriving in a couple of weeks. Other top stories this week included a host of product rumors including additional M2 and even M3 Macs, an updated...
Mac Studio IO

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished Mac Studio Models

Thursday June 30, 2022 7:42 pm PDT by
Apple today began selling refurbished Mac Studio models for the first time in the United States, Canada, and select European countries, such as Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. In the United States, two refurbished Mac Studio configurations are currently available, including one with the M1 Max chip (10-core CPU and 24-core GPU) for...
macbook air m2

Exclusive: Apple Plans to Launch MacBook Air With M2 Chip on July 15

Wednesday June 29, 2022 5:23 pm PDT by
The redesigned MacBook Air with the all-new M2 Apple silicon chip will be available for customers starting Friday, July 15, MacRumors has learned from a retail source. The new MacBook Air was announced and previewed during WWDC earlier this month, with Apple stating availability will begin in July. The MacBook Air features a redesigned body that is thinner and lighter than the previous...
13 inch macbook pro m2 mock feature 2

M2 MacBook Pro Much Slower Than Previous Model

Friday July 1, 2022 2:24 am PDT by
Apple's new 13-inch MacBook Pro with the M2 chip features a significantly slower SSD compared to the previous model, resulting in poorer performance in some workflows, it has been discovered. Specifically, it has been found that the $1,299 base model with 256GB of storage has significantly slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the equivalent previous-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro....