EU apple taxAs Apple continues to face a legal battle with the European Commission concerning the regulator's claim that Apple received illegal state aid from Ireland and owes billions in back taxes, the latest development has seen the Cupertino company decline an invitation to testify before a special committee on the tax evasion claims (via Reuters).

According to a letter to the European Parliament shared on Twitter today by Parliament member Sven Giegold, Apple said it "will not be able to participate in a public hearing" on the topic of tax evasion.

The company's senior director for European government affairs, Claire Thwaites, explained that while the company appeals the Commission's decision alleging state aid from Ireland, "it is important to ensure public commentary does not prejudice those proceedings."

Because of this, Apple fears its presence at the June 21 EU hearing "could be detrimental" to its appeal, and "any potential appeals thereafter." Thwaites ended the letter by stating Apple would, however, be open to meeting privately with Committee members to address questions on its decision.

Since the appeal is ongoing and likely to be heard at the General Court in the near future we will not be able to participate in a public hearing on this topic as it could be detrimental to the proceedings at the Court, and any potential appeals thereafter.

I'd like to emphasize that we have the deepest respect for the Committee, it's members and the important work you are undertaking. We would be happy to meet privately with you or other Committee members and address any questions you may have.

Despite Apple's appeal, the company has started paying the 13 billion euros in back taxes to the Irish government this month. Like the wording in Thwaites' letter today, Apple has remained adamant that the company follows the law and pays "every cent of tax" it owes "in every country" it operates. In the wake of the legal battle, Apple CEO Tim Cook called the decision "total political crap" back in 2016, saying that "the decision is wrong, and it's not based on law or facts, it's based on politics. And I think it's very important that we stand up and say that very loudly."

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

thebeans Avatar
61 months ago
100% agree with Cook on this one. As long as they pay all taxes that are required, they should not be punished nor have to pay “back taxes”. Now if you want to say they are locating some of their business entities in countries with favorable tax policies to avoid paying as much as they would in some other locations, wel... of course they are. Let’s not lose sight of the fact that Apple exists to make money. They are a business. For those that would criticize them for paying as little as they can and taking advantage of every deduction, I ask do you pay more than you are required to in taxes to your government? I highly doubt it. You take all deductions you are entitled to. Same with Apple.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KidAKidB Avatar
61 months ago
100% agree with Cook on this one. As long as they pay all taxes that are required, they should not be punished nor have to pay “back taxes”. Now if you want to say they are locating some of their business entities in countries with favorable tax policies to avoid paying as much as they would in some other locations, wel... of course they are. Let’s not lose sight of the fact that Apple exists to make money. They are a business. For those that would criticize them for paying as little as they can and taking advantage of every deduction, I ask do you pay more than you are required to in taxes to your government? I highly doubt it. You take all deductions you are entitled to. Same with Apple.
Except that they didn't pay all taxes that were required, hence why they owe $13 billion.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KidAKidB Avatar
61 months ago
I never really understood this story, and every time I try doing some research on it, I get bored really quickly.

The gist of the story is the Apple is being accused of tax evasion, but all the parties involved, Ireland and Apple, says that they are paying the appropriate taxes. Ireland gave Apple a special tax deal that works out great for both parties, but the European Commission says it isn't fair?

I am sure it is much more complicated than that, but it seems to me that if Ireland wants to give special tax considerations that would benefit both the tax payer and the people of Ireland, I don't see where the problem is.
[doublepost=1527860581][/doublepost]
This is the most interesting thing about the story:

Basically Ireland gave special tax deals to Apple in exchange for Apple opening more infrastructure in Ireland. The EU doesn't allow special deals and therefore forced Ireland to collect the unpaid taxes Apple should have owed.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jacquesvw Avatar
61 months ago
.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macfacts Avatar
61 months ago
They are allowed to do this, but there isn't a clear line between a special tax rate and an illegal state aid. The so called head office of Apple, which existed only on paper due to a weird irish special deal from 1991, made it possible to lower Apples tax rate in 2014 to 0.005% on global profits. It seems that the EU has a point when they call this a huge financial advantage. If this is an illegal state aid is now up to the court to the decide.
If Ireland wants give Apple a sweet deal by charging 0.005%, then Ireland has to give that deal to ALL foreign companies. Ireland only gave that deal to Apple, so that is considered "state aid."

The line is clear.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
miniyou64 Avatar
61 months ago
Apple isn’t what it used to be but there’s no more efficient way to waste money or cause destruction than by handing it over to a government
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iOS 16

iOS 16.3 Now Available for Your iPhone With These 4 New Features

Friday February 3, 2023 1:13 pm PST by
Apple released iOS 16.3 in late January following nearly six weeks of beta testing. The software update is available for the iPhone 8 and newer, and while it is a relatively minor update, it still includes a handful of new features, changes, and bug fixes. Below, we've recapped new features in iOS 16.3, including support for physical security keys as a two-factor authentication option for...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

Gurman: Apple Considering New High-End iPhone Alongside Pro and Pro Max

Sunday February 5, 2023 6:07 am PST by
Apple has discussed selling a new top-of-the-line iPhone alongside the Pro and Pro Max models in 2024 at the earliest, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Based on this timeframe, the device would be part of the iPhone 16 lineup or later. In a September 2022 edition of his weekly "Power On" newsletter, Gurman said there was "potential" for an iPhone 15 Ultra to replace the iPhone 15 Pro...
ipad air purple

Deals: M1 iPad Air Hits Record-Low Prices at TigerDirect, Starting at $313.99 (48% Off) [Updated]

Saturday February 4, 2023 10:05 am PST by
Online retailer TigerDirect has slashed pricing on the M1 iPad Air in several colors, offering the base 64GB configuration for just $313.99 in Purple and Pink. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with TigerDirect. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. That's a savings of 48% compared to Apple's normal $599.00...
mac studio pink

Apple May Not Launch Updated Mac Studio With M2 Ultra Chip Due to Similarity With Upcoming Mac Pro

Sunday February 5, 2023 6:06 am PST by
A new version of the Mac Studio with the "M2 Ultra" chip is unlikely to arrive in the near future, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In the latest edition of his "Power On" newsletter, Gurman explained that since the upcoming Apple silicon Mac Pro is "very similar in functionality to the Mac Studio," Apple may wait until the release of M3- or M4-series chips to update the machine, or...
webkit vs chromium feature

Google Working on Browser for iOS That Would Break Apple's App Store Rules

Saturday February 4, 2023 1:30 am PST by
Google's Chromium developers are working on an experimental web browser for iOS that would break Apple's browser engine restrictions, The Register reports. The experimental browser, which is being actively pursued by developers, uses Google's Blink engine. Yet if Google attempted to release it on the App Store, it would not pass Apple's App Review process. Apple's App Store rules dictate...
Apple Silicon Teal Feature

The Next Big Apple Silicon Device May Not Be a Mac or iPad

Wednesday February 1, 2023 3:57 am PST by
Apple's next device with an Apple silicon chip may not be a Mac or an iPad, but rather an advanced external display, according to recent reports. The display, which is rumored to arrive this year, is expected to sit somewhere between the $1,599 Studio Display and the $4,999 Pro Display XDR – but more exact information about the device's positioning and price point is as yet unknown. While ...
top stories 4feb2023

Top Stories: New HomePod Launches, iOS 16.3.1 Coming Soon, and More

Saturday February 4, 2023 6:00 am PST by
This week saw the launch of the final product from Apple's January hardware announcements, with the second-generation HomePod making its way into customers' hands. Other news and rumors this week included signs of an interim iOS 16.3.1 bug fix update in the works as we await a fresh round of beta testing for a more significant iOS 16.4 update, a report on the potential dangers of using...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With Apple's Second-Generation HomePod

Friday February 3, 2023 1:28 pm PST by
Today is the official launch day for the second-generation HomePod that was introduced in January, and we picked one up to compare it to the original HomePod that Apple discontinued in 2021. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design wise, the second-generation HomePod looks a lot like the first-generation model, featuring the same rounded design and acoustic mesh...