That Apple tax verdict… August 30, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
What telling contortions we are seeing. Already, as noted here today by IEL, the LP is rowing in with any government appeal.
The Government will argue – and there is a basis for this – that rule changes in recent years have closed off some of the tax arrangements central to the Apple case.
However the damning verdict by the European Commission on how tax was applied in the Apple case left it with little option but to lodge an appeal, given the central importance of foreign direct investment to our economy. As Apple will also appeal, a lengthy legal process is inevitable.
Big US companies have used the interplay of European and US tax laws to pay very little tax on profits earned in European markets. Ireland’s tax system is only a part of this and, in fact, much of it is based on the peculiarities of US tax law.
Hmmm… it’s not me Ireland, it’s you US – eh?
And yet the IT has to admit:
There is no doubt that this needs to change and that the amounts paid by many of these companies has been indefensibly low. It remains to be seen, however, if the European courts support the Commission’s drive to address this problem via state aid rules.
Fintan O’Toole has a markedly better line here.
Not least the following:
At the very least, we should not be railroaded into lodging an appeal against the ruling that will define us, for the rest of the world, as the tax-avoider’s crazy little sidekick. We have some big thinking to do – and the cabinet’s job on Wednesday morning is to open up that process of deliberation, not to insist that any democratic decision that Apple does not like is unthinkable.