Apple boss Tim Cook flew into Brussels on Thursday to lobby the EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestage over a landmark judgement that could see the company forced to pay billions in back taxes to the Irish government.
Bloomberg Intelligence estimates that the potential windfall for the Irish Revenue Commissioners could be €8 billion while JP Morgan suggests that Apple could have to pay €19 billion.
Cllr Brid Smith from People Before Profit said,
“You would think that the Irish government would be delighted with getting this huge amount of money. It would allow them to end the chaos in Irish hospitals because they could recruit more staff. They also could use the money to build the tens of thousands of social housing units that are desperately needed.
“But, tragically, Apple has enlisted the Irish government as one of its chief lobbyists in derailing an EU judgement. It has said that it does not want the money and that if the EU commissioner makes a ruling for back taxes they will appeal the decision.
“One immediate result of Irish government lobbying is that the announcement of the EU judgement has been postponed until after the General Election. We are being forced to fight such an election on a ‘how much does your promise cost’ basis without knowing the full extent of back taxes.
“Irish taxpayers’ money should not be used to send officials to Brussels to lobby against the Irish people receiving taxes that have been dodged for over ten years.
“The Apple scandal shows where the culture of multi-national blackmail leads. We have been told repeatedly that we must give them a low tax regime because they ‘create jobs’. Every proposal to make them pay a modest tax has been dismissed as ‘wrecking the economy’.
“Now we have finally arrived at the greatest absurdity of all – a government that is spending money to ensure that its’ own people do not receive the huge sums they are owed”.
For more information- Cllr Bríd Smith ( 087 909 0166)