EU Seeks Missing Apple Tax-Probe Details From Irish Governmentby and
Irish finance ministry says it fully addressed EU's concerns
No decision on Apple tax investigation imminent, ministry says
The European Commission asked Ireland to supply missing data on Apple Inc.’s tax affairs in the nation amid a growing rift over whether the iPhone-maker got special treatment from the Irish government.
Ireland “did not reply in full to the Commission’s last request for information, which is why the Commission has sent a reminder to Ireland to request the missing data,” spokesman Ricardo Cardoso said in an e-mail Wednesday.
The Irish Finance Ministry said in a statement it’s already “comprehensively addressed” the European Union regulator’s concerns “making it clear that the appropriate amount of Irish tax was charged in accordance with the relevant legislation.”
Apple’s tax affairs in Ireland and Amazon.com Inc.’s arrangements in Luxembourg are slated to be next in the firing line as the European Commission takes aim at so-called tax rulings it says may be unfair subsidies. The EU authority has already ordered the Netherlands and Luxembourg to recover as much as 30 million euros ($33.3 million) apiece in back taxes from Starbucks Corp. and a Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV unit.
The request for missing information in the Apple case was reported earlier in the Irish Times.
The EU probe comes as the European Parliament also seeks to throw the spotlight on companies such as Apple, Alphabet Inc.’s Google and McDonald’s Corp. over their arrangements with EU governments.
Apple told a panel of lawmakers Tuesday that it pays all taxes due in Ireland and doesn’t get an unfair advantage compared with other companies there.
“We feel that we’ve paid every cent of tax that is due in Ireland,” said Cathy Kearney, a vice-president of the company’s European operations in Cork, Ireland.
“We don’t feel that there has been state aid involved and I suppose we look forward to that outcome happening at the end of the day and being vindicated in that way,” she said. “I would say that the Irish government also agrees with that view.”