Ireland Must Send a Clear Message that it is Tax Compliant and Attractive to Long-Term Substantive Investment – Minister Pat Breen TD.

August 31st, 2016 - Pat Breen

Minister for Employment and Small Businesses, Pat Breen TD, stated today, Wednesday, that the European Commission’s decision in the Apple State Aid Case must be appealed.

“I believe the finding by the European Commission is not only flawed but creates uncertainty for business and investment in Europe and risks undermining Ireland as an attractive base for international business. More than 10,000 jobs in Clare are directly dependent on the international market, with thousands of more jobs indirectly reliant on foreign investment and support,” said the Minister of State.

“I agree with my colleague the Minister for Finance Michael Noonan that this appeal is necessary to defend the integrity of our tax system; to provide tax certainty to business; and to challenge the encroachment of EU state aid rules into the sovereign Member State competence of taxation.”

“Ultimately Ireland’s position remains – the full amount of tax was paid in this case and no State aid was provided. It is also worth noting that while the Commission is requiring Ireland to recover the “tax sums”, it is also acknowledging that the sums may in fact be taxable in other jurisdictions. So talks of €13 billion being owed to the Irish State is not plausible, even by the EC’s own argument,” said Minister Breen.

“Claims that profits allocated to the Apple companies’ head offices were not subject to tax in any country under a specific provision of the Irish tax law is also incorrect according to the Department of Finance. This refers to a mismatch between different countries’ tax rules, which by definition cannot be the responsibility of Ireland alone.”

“At the end of last year there were 6,599 supported jobs in IDA Ireland Client Companies in Clare, with a further 3,255 jobs supported by Enterprise Ireland. The live register in Clare is down by 35.7% when compared to February 2012. Putting this economic progress in jeopardy by letting this ruling stand and refusing to lodge an appeal would be a mistake,” added the Clare Fine Gael TD.

“It is my understanding that the cabinet will meet again on Friday to discuss this matter. I accept that this is a complex issue and some of my Government colleagues have requested some additional time to study the matter and seek some advice. Ireland has two months and 10 days to lodge an appeal, so I do not see any issue with this request.

“It is not only important, but it is vital, that we send a strong message that Ireland is both tax compliant and an attractive and stable location of choice for long-term substantive investment,” added the Clare minister.