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Revenue and Finance Department deny tax deal with Apple

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore claims Ireland’s tax system is “very transparent”.

Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook
Image: Paul Sakuma/AP/Press Association Images

THE OFFICE OF the Revenue  Commissioner and the Department of Finance have denied a special tax deal was negotiated with technology corporation Apple.

A US Senate investigation reported that the company agreed an arrangement with Irish authorities in the early nineties which allowed it pay two per cent corporation tax on profits.

However, a Revenue Commissioner spokeswoman denied it gave  favourable treatment to any multinational firm.

“Revenue does not do special tax rate deals with companies. There is no special extra low corporation tax rate for multinational companies,” she said.

“All companies in Ireland pay the standard 12.5 per cent rate on their trading profits arising in Ireland and they pay a corporation tax rate of 25 per  cent on their Irish non trading income.”

A Department of Finance spokesman said it did not engage in “specific or individual negotiations”  with companies and “no special rate” was offered to any firm.

“Reports of lower effective tax rates appear to arrive at their figures by running together the profits earned by group companies in Ireland and in other jurisdictions and incorrectly suggesting that Irish tax does or should apply to both,” he said.

Earlier, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore told RTE Radio 1 that Ireland’s tax laws were “very transparent” and claimed the issues surrounding Apple’s tax bill stemmed from “problems in other jurisdictions”.

They are issues which arise from other jurisdictions. That’s an issue which has to be addressed, first of all in those jurisdictions and secondly,  it needs to be tackled by having robust international agreements, and Ireland is very much is in favour of that.
We want to see tax evasion and loopholes closed so that everybody pays their due tax including all companies. It is an issue that Ireland supports strongly at EU and at OECD level.

Apple CEO Tim Cook will be before the Senate at 14.30pm this afternoon to answer questions on the company’s tax structures.

Read: Ireland is Apple’s ‘Holy Grail of tax avoidance’ >

Read: Google exec grilled in UK over ‘devious’ use of Ireland to reduce tax >

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