Apple has been freed from paying €13 billion in Irish back taxes, for now, after the General Court of the European Union annulled the decision made by the European Commission (EC) in 2016. The Commission four years ago ruled the deal Apple had with Irish tax authorities was illegal, saying Ireland had granted Apple €13 billion in unlawful tax advantages, but the EU’s second highest court this week said there was not enough evidence to show the tech giant broke EU competition rules. “The General Court annuls the contested decision because the Commission did not succeed in showing to the requisite legal standard that there was an advantage for the purposes of Article 107(1) TFEU,” the judgement [PDF] says. “According to the General Court, the Commission was wrong to declare that ASI [Apple Sales International] and AOE [Apple Operations Europe] had been granted a selective economic advantage and, by extension, State aid.” The Commission’s ruling followed a two-year investigation, which found two tax rulings that Ireland issued to Apple “substantially and artificially” lowered the tax the company paid in the country since 1991. The deal saw Apple attribute all profits from two of its incorporated companies to a “head office” in… Read full this story
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