Ruling in EU’s Apple tax grab case due on July 15th

The European Union’s second highest court will next week rule in an appeal by Apple and Ireland against an EU ruling for the U.S. company to pay a tax of 13 billion euros (US$16 billion) in back taxes, the Irish government said on Wednesday.

In September 2018, Ireland collected €14.3 billion in disputed back taxes and interest from Apple. It was placed in an escrow account pending Dublin’s appeal against the ruling which is ongoing.

Apple Distribution International
Apple Distribution International in Cork, Ireland


The European Commission ordered Apple in 2016 to pay the taxes it said were owed to Ireland. But Apple and Ireland, whose economy benefits from hosting a number of multinational firms, began an appeal against the decision in September.

[Ireland’s] Deputy Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said the judgment was likely to be appealed by one of the parties. “I think that no matter what the judgment is, this case will almost certainly be appealed by one party or another to the European Court of Justice,” Varadkar told journalists.

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said Apple’s commitment to Ireland, which became its first European operation in 1980 and where it employs 6,00 workers, was “unshakable.”

MacDailyNews Take: Just another can kick down the road.


  1. For about the twentieth time, this isn’t an “EU tax grab,” because the EU will not receive any of the taxes in question. The only party that might is Ireland, which is not grabbing because it agrees with Apple’s position and is aligned with the company in the lawsuit.

    1. You are factually correct of course, but the interpretation here (which I agree with) is that the EU forced this upon Ireland and that Margrethe Vestager is leading the charge against many more profitable multinational (aka US) companies. There is a lot at stake here not just on what is fair in global taxation but also autonomy of EU member states. Should be very interesting ruling.

    2. Yes, and for the “twentieth time”, everyone knows what it means. Everyone knows it’s an EU member even if MDN says EU. And because the EU member agrees with Apple, it is the EU forcing the EU member to receive the disputed taxes. Can you say it in a pithy way, other than EU tax grab?

  2. If the government of California condemns land for a state highway, it is not a “federal land grab” because the federal government will not financially benefit, regardless of the outcome of the condemnation action. Calling it an “American land grab” would be equally inaccurate. This is a lawsuit to determine the respective authority of the EU treaties and EU members to determine tax policy, not a grab by anybody.

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