Apple Inc. recently received an Irish tax bill worth $14 billion in relation to its supposedly illegal activities in the country. In answer to this, the tech giant has filed a 14-point long appeal to the European Commission contradicting the ruling. According to this appeal, Apple claims that the European Commission has breached the ‘right to good administration’. This is in context to the incident when the organization demanded Apple to pay $14 billion in back taxes to the country of Ireland. The European Commission filed a case accusing Ireland of providing the state funds to Apple. Apart from this, the organization charged Apple on a number of grounds. This included charges such as tax evasion which resulted in the ruling to be under European Commission’s favor.
Apple has put forward its legal argument at the Cork in Ireland. The argument states that Apple’s European wing has been set up keeping in mind the regulations and laws of the country. The two main arguments by Apple question how fair was the investigation process by the commission and stick to the statement that Brussels has made fundamental errors in the understanding of the Irish law. The company has also justified the way in which it has generated its profits in Ireland.
Details about Apple’s appeal against the Irish tax bill
The pleas by Apple were released by the European Court of Justice on Monday. The pleas specifically point out that the commission has violated the principles of non-retroactivity and legal certainty. It also claims that the commission conducted the investigation in an impartial and diligent manner. Through this, a breach of European Commission’s Charter of Fundamental Rights has taken place. The company states that the commission had given no clear reasons for its decision regarding the Irish tax bill. This has hindered the company’s ‘right to good administration’ as it assures fair, impartial, and timely treatment.
European Commission’s competition commissioner during the investigation, Margrethe Vestager stated that the investigation showed that Ireland had granted illegal tax benefits to Apple. This enabled the company to pay a substantially lower amount of tax over the years in comparison to other businesses. The rules about tax benefits and state aid are clear since the beginning. Despite this, multinational companies have been forgetting the boundaries of aggressive tax planning. This has led to the Irish tax bill incident with Apple Inc.