EU Takes Ireland to Court Over Unpaid €13bn State Aid Bill

By Gary Cutlack on at

Apple hasn't paid Ireland the vast amount of tax it was deemed to owe as the result of a competition investigation into how it handles its European tax affairs, so the European Commission is launching legal proceedings in the European Court of Justice to force Ireland to recover the bill.

This relates to a decision made last year that judged Ireland's favourable tax deal with Apple to be an illegal form of state aid, resulting in unpaid taxes of up to €13bn or around £11.5bn. The EU, fresh from shaming Amazon over similar arrangements with Luxembourg, has been waiting for Tim Cook to sign the cheque or even pop over to Apple Pay it in person, but no. Nothing's arrived yet. So the courts it is.

Competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said: "Ireland has to recover up to 13 billion euros in illegal State aid from Apple. However, more than one year after the Commission adopted this decision, Ireland has still not recovered the money, also not in part. We of course understand that recovery in certain cases may be more complex than in others, and we are always ready to assist. But Member States need to make sufficient progress to restore competition. That is why we have today decided to refer Ireland to the EU Court for failing to implement our decision." [EC]


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