Apple has denied that it moved some of its operations from Ireland to Jersey, one of the largest of the Channel Islands, as an offshore tax haven so as to keep hold of its low tax rate.
The company issued a statement in the wake of the “Paradise Papers” reveal, showing details about how wealthy individuals and companies move large quantities of money overseas to bypass taxes. However, Apple says that no actual operations or investments were moved from Ireland.
Instead, it claims it made a change to its corporate structure — which took place in 2015 — that wasn’t intended to reduce its taxes anywhere else in the world, but rather to preserve those to the United States.
Apple, which recently became the first company in the world to pass a valuation of $900 billion, also reiterated its regular position by saying that it pays all the taxes that is owes.
It additionally pointed out that it is currently the single largest taxpayer in the world — having paid more than $35 billion in corporate income taxes over the past three years. Apple states that it pays a statutory 35 percent rate on investment income from its overseas cash.
The recent Paradise Papers were first obtained by Germany’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, before being shared with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and a number of media companies.
You can read Apple’s lengthy response, a press release titled “The Facts About Apple’s Tax Payments,” here.
Apple’s tax avoidance accusations
The recent uproar surrounding the Paradise Papers isn’t the first time Apple has come under the spotlight for its tax practices. Last year, the European Union handed Apple a massive tax bill of $17.6 billion, claiming that the company took advantage of illegal state aid that allowed it to route profits through Ireland.
The investigation alleged that Apple paid the equivalent of as little as 0.005 percent on all European profits in 2014. Last month, the European Commission took Ireland to court for failing to collect the money as owed.
Apple has always insisted that it properly pays all of its tax obligations.