Earlier in August this year, the European Commission had instructed Apple to pay $14.5 billion in outstanding taxes to the Irish government for cutting a deal with them. The Cupertino giant had then called out their decision saying that it was a political stunt and the company didn’t owe a single penny to anyone.
Now, according to Reuters, Apple is putting pen to paper and planning to lodge an official appeal against the ruling. It is of the opinion that EU singled out of Apple because of its success in the country. Talking about the same, the company’s General Counsel Bruce Sewell said,
Apple is not an outlier in any sense that matters to the law. Apple is a convenient target because it generates lots of headlines.
This week, the Cupertino tech behemoth is planning to lodge an appeal against the Commission’s previous ruling in the second highest court in Europe. Their argument revolves around the fact that EU regulators didn’t abide by a legal procedure and turned a blind eye to tax experts brought in by Irish authorities. Instead, it deliberately picked a method to calculate and impose humongous back taxes on the company. Here Sewell continues to add,
Now the Irish have put in an expert opinion from an incredibly well-respected Irish tax lawyer. The Commission not only didn’t attack that – didn’t argue with it, as far as we know – they probably didn’t even read it. Because there is no reference (in the EU decision) whatsoever
Also, the company says that EU, in their initial investigation, wrongly determined that two of Apple’s businesses existed only on paper and were a front to dupe the government over tax rulings in the country. They believe that it didn’t justify the unpaid taxes as both companies are real and actively managed by them.
The tax rulings in Ireland are different for resident and non-residents when compared to other EU states. Due to the same, the Irish govt has recently appealed against the Commission’s decision saying no to the huge sum of money. Both the Cupertino giant and the state believe that the EU is exploiting a loophole based on differences between Europe’s localized tax rules and the US global method.
And the European Commission is pinning Apple to the ground because it believes the Irish government handed out special tax incentives to the company. It provides an unfair advantage to other tech companies operating in the country but Ireland denies that it helped Apple evade the law. The state is concerned that the Commission’s decision against one tech behemoth might scare away other tech firms from setting up their offices and operating out of Ireland.