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EU Commissioner demolishes Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil’s arguments on Apple tax - Pearse Doherty TD

31 January, 2017 - by Pearse Doherty TD


Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has called on the government not waste taxpayers money on an appeal against the EU Commission's decision regarding the Apple Tax scandal following the appearance of Commissioner Margrethe Vestager before the  Finance Committee today.

Deputy Doherty's call came after Commissioner Vestegar robustly defended her judgement that €13billion plus interest of back taxes is owed to Ireland by Apple.

He said:

"Following Commissioner Vestegar's appearance before the Finance Committee, it is absolutely clear that the government must not proceed with wasting taxpayer's money appealing the EU Commission's decision.

“Point after point put up by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil around so called fantasy money, Ireland acting as a tax collector for the world and arguments around selectivity and tax sovereignty were not only dismissed but destroyed by evidence from the commissioner. Both parties engaged in a concerted effort to misinform the Irish public that this back tax was not due to us, which is shocking.

“It’s is clear from the Commission’s 130 page report, that they have left no stone unturned in arriving at the decision. The report is objective, well researched and the authors have shown a clear understanding of the minutia of Irish tax legalisation.     

"Engaging the appeal process would be an abuse of public given what we heard in the proceeding of the committee today.

"Cutting through the technicalities, it seems hard to arrive at the conclusion that the EU Commission believes what happened was a misunderstanding or a misapplication of procedure. Rather it appears to me that the Commission is suggesting a calculated, contrived and unique arrangement was put in place to favour Apple at the expense of other companies such as indigenous companies.   

“It beggars belief that the government would fight this case, which is clearly watertight.

“The government should immediately stop it’s wasting taxpayers money on the appeal process, from which the only winners seem will be the lawyers and accountants paid by the State. 

"This debacle centres on a dodgy deal whereby Apple were able to decide what tax they would pay on an arbitrary basis, with no scientific basis or accordance with Irish tax legislation. 

"It is now time for government to stand-up for citizens and ensure that the money owed to the state is paid without obstruction or necessary delays."

ENDS

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