The European Commission has today ruled that Apple must pay back the 13 billion Euros ($14.5 billion) in back taxes that have accrued since tax year 2003 and up until 2014, reports MacRumors.
EU commissioner Margrethe Vestager (pictured announcing the decision today) said that the tax benefits that Apple has, until now, enjoyed in Ireland are “illegal under EU state aid rules, because it allowed Apple to pay substantially less tax than other businesses. Ireland must now recover the legal aid.”
According to Vestager, the special treatment for Apple meant that it paid a tax rate of just 1% of its European profits in 2003, and as little as 0.005% in 2014.
“For every million euros in profit, it (Apple) paid just €500 in taxes,” said Vestager.
Ireland’s Finance Minister Noonan said that Ireland “disagrees profoundly” with the EU commission’s ruling, and that he would be asking his cabinet for approval to appeal the ruling.
Apple has responded to the ruling with the following statement:
"Further, Apple CEO Tim Cook has posted “A Message to the Apple Community in Europe” on Apple’s website, talking about how much Apple has invested in Cork in Ireland, and that it employs nearly 6,000 people in Ireland in total. Here’s just a small excerpt of Cook’s lengthy letter:
Sources: Apple Must Repay $14.5 Billion in Back Taxes, EU Commission Rules