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Image: AP Photo/David Goldman

This is how much tax Google paid in Ireland last year

The company employed nearly 3,000 people across Ireland in 2014.
Oct 29th 2015, 10:34 AM 35,928 141

GOOGLE’S IRISH ARM handed over €28.6 million in corporate taxes on turnover of €18.3 billion last year.

Accounts just filed for Google Ireland Limited, through which the US search giant channelled about a third of its $66 billion in global revenue for 2014, showed the company delivered a net profit of €167.9 million for the 12 months.

Both the profit and revenue figures were around 8% up on the previous year, while direct employment at the company increased 17% to an average 2,763 staff over the 12 months.

Of its total headcount in Ireland, about two-thirds worked in sales and marketing, with about 12% employed in engineering and company operations.

The company said it had invested over €500 million in the country on buildings and other capital assets. It recently began building a €150 million data centre in west Dublin, while last year it bought the Grand Mill Quay development from bad bank Nama.

Google Ireland head Ronan Harris said the Dublin office was the company’s largest outside the US with more than 5,000 employees including contracted staff. The company would continue investing in Ireland this year, he added.

00143137 The Foundry at Google's Irish offices Source: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie

Offshore accounts

Google Ireland’s accounts also showed some €12.5 billion from the revenues it booked in the Republic were siphoned off in administrative expenses, which included royalties paid to its own offshore companies.

Google, like many other multinationals with operations in Ireland, has been criticised for using a web of international subsidiaries to route its global profits to tax havens.

While legal, the complex structures mean companies can avoid paying taxes on all but a fraction of the amounts they earn outside their home territories.

A recent study estimated the company was hoarding $45 billion offshore, although that figure was dwarfed by the $181 billion attributed to Apple.

Enda Taoiseach Enda Kenny at Google's offices Source: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie

Both the iPhone maker and Ireland are expected to be hit with negative findings from an ongoing European Commission investigation over an alleged sweetheart tax deal between the two.

EU officials claim the Irish government traded preferential treatment for jobs in agreements dating back more than 20 years. Apple could be forced to cough up billions in unpaid taxes, although the current government has said no illegal state aid was granted and it will fight any adverse findings.

READ: The EU voted on rules that will shape the internet here, but how will it affect you? >

READ: This is where Ireland really ranks for setting up and running a business >

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Peter Bodkin

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