Apple Said to Pay $348 Million in Italian Taxes to Settle Claim

  • European antitrust officials are probing Apple’s tax dealings
  • IPhone maker has said in past it doesn’t use 'tax gimmicks'

European Antitrust Officials Probe Apple’s Tax Dealings

Apple Inc. has paid 318 million euros ($348 million) to settle an Italian tax claim, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The Cupertino, California-based company paid the full amount the country’s tax authorities had sought after ruling that Apple booked 880 million euros in profits to an Irish subsidiary from 2008 to 2013 to take advantage of Ireland’s more favorable corporate tax rates, according to the person, who asked not to be named because the matter isn’t public.

The payment was reported earlier by La Repubblica. A press officer at Italy’s tax agency declined to comment. Representatives for Apple weren’t immediately available to comment when contacted by phone and e-mail. The iPhone maker has said in the past it doesn’t use “tax gimmicks.”

European authorities have stepped up efforts to crack down on international tax avoidance as companies benefit from havens and so-called sweetheart deals with national governments including Luxembourg and the Netherlands. European antitrust officials are probing Apple’s tax dealings in Ireland, where the company has operated since 1980 and plans to expand. Regional regulators, which are also probing Inc., in October ordered Starbucks Corp. and a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV unit to repay millions of euros in back taxes.

Apple raised a flag in April about the potential cost if the company is required to pay past taxes to Ireland as part of the commission investigation. While Apple hasn’t been able to estimate the amount, it could be “material,” the company said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.