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Apple must be forced to repay taxes lost through dodgy deals with government

category national | economics and finance | press release author Wednesday June 03, 2015 23:24author by ER Report this post to the editors

Press Release 28th May 2015 - Debt and Development Coalition Ireland

Apple must be forced to repay taxes lost through dodgy deals with government, say tax campaigners

Tax justice campaigns group Debt & Development Coalition Ireland (DDCI) today welcomed the fact-finding mission to Ireland of the European Parliament Special Tax Committee on Thursday 28th May.

In advance of DDCI’s presentation to the Parliament delegation on Thursday, DDCI coordinator Eilis Ryan said the visit of the delegation was a clear sign that European politicians – just like the Irish public – are losing patience with corporate tax dodging – in particular in light of ongoing cutbacks blamed on lack of revenue by government.

The committee was established in the wake of the LuxLeaks ( http://www.icij.org/project/luxembourg-leaks ) scandal, which implicated Irish household names such as Glanbia and Sisk in elaborate tax dodging arrangements. It is visiting Ireland to investigate allegations of state aid, in contravention of EC rules, by the Irish government to multi-national companies, in the form of tax breaks and private tax agreements with MNCs – known as ‘tax rulings’.

Ryan in particular highlighted the ongoing European Commission inquiry into Ireland’s alleged secret tax agreement with Apple;

“The preliminary findings of the European Commission’s inquiry into Apple’s tax arrangements in Ireland demonstrate the blatant ability of multi-national companies to manipulate their profits in order to minimize tax. In the case of Apple in Ireland, this seems to have been done with the blessing of the Irish government.”

Ryan continued;

“These tax rulings – which guaranteed indefinite low rate tax payments – given by Irish Revenue to Apple in 1991 and 2007 were based on no known or agreed set of criteria, were never made public, and are legally dubious.

This manner of ‘race to the bottom’ tax competition means business conducted in Ireland raises minimal revenue for Ireland, whilst at the same time incentivizing the false ‘shifting’ of Apple’s profits from developing countries in Africa and elsewhere – denying those countries badly needed revenue.”

She concluded;

“We need to know the nature of any special tax arrangements reached with companies like Apple, and when that is known, there is a clear need to demand repayment for revenue lost through dodgy tax deals.”

Contact - Eilis Ryan DDCI Coordinator - 0863108553

Notes for editors

- The European Parliament Special Committee on tax rulings and other measures of similar effect was established in February 2015 to investigate the nature of profit-shifting, tax rulings and illicit tax arrangements, in the wake of the LuxLeaks and SwissLeaks

- The delegation is composed of MEPs from every party, and is accompanied by Irish MEPs Brian Hayes, Marian Harkin and Matt Carthy;

- The delegation is in Dublin on May 28th

- The European Commission began an investigation last year into Ireland’s tax arrangements with Apple. It issued its preliminary view on 30th September 2014 that Ireland’s tax arrangements with Apple do constitute state aid.

Related Link: http://www.debtireland.org/news/2015/05/28/apple-must-be-forced-to-repay-taxes-lost-through-d/
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