Apple gets an unexpected €13 billion tax bill

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Apple just got landed with the tax bill from hell.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The verdict’s in on Apple’s European tax investigation, and the company has been handed a massive 13 billion euros ($14.52 billion) bill for unpaid back taxes in the Republic of Ireland.

The order was made by European Union competition officials, who ruled that Apple was taking advantage of illegal state aid that allowed the company to route profits through Ireland.

According to the probe, Apple paid a tax rate of as little as 0.005 percent on its European profits in 2014. To put that number in perspective, it’s around $50 tax for every $1 million brought in.

“The Commission’s investigation concluded that Ireland granted illegal tax benefits to Apple, which enabled it to pay substantially less tax than other businesses over many years,” European Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said, noting that, “member states cannot give tax benefits to selected companies — this is illegal under EU state aid rules.”

Other multinationals Starbucks and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles were previously ordered to pay as much as 30 million euros ($33.3 million) in back taxes by the European Union, but that figure is dwarfed by Apple’s monumental tax bill.

Ireland’s finance ministry has said it “disagrees profoundly” with the decision, and will be appealing it. Apple will reportedly be doing the same.

Apple previously said it pays “every cent of tax” it owes in Ireland, and gets no special treatment compared with other companies.

During last year’s “Inside Apple” episode of 60 Minutes, Tim Cook labeled reports that Apple doesn’t pay its taxes “total political crap.” Apple’s Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri has said that “if there is a fair outcome of the [European Commission] investigation, [Apple should pay] zero” extra tax.

With this Apple EU tax ruling, we guess that’s out of the question now!

Via: Sky News