Euro Stories June 11, 2014

Apple responds to EU investigation into tax practices: “Apple pays every euro of every tax that we owe”

Following a report yesterday that the European Commission was about to launch a formal investigation into Apple’s tax practices in Ireland, the EU has now officially announced the investigation at a press conference. Bloomberg reports that the investigation will include not just Apple, but also Starbucks and Fiat Finance & Trade SA and will look at “whether the tax deals in Ireland, the Netherlands and Luxembourg are illegal state aid.” 

“Special secret deals should be outlawed across the EU,” Chas Roy-Chowdhury, head of taxation at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, said in an e-mailed statement. “All tax breaks and reliefs should be openly available for qualifying businesses.”

“We need to fight against aggressive tax planning,” Joaquin Almunia, the EU’s competition commissioner, said at a press conference in Brussels. He said it’s “still too soon to anticipate” possible recovery if the EU finds the tax rulings to be illegal.

Apple responded with a statement to Bloomberg following the news claiming that it “pays every euro of every tax that we owe” and that it “received no selective treatment from Irish officials.” Apple’s full statement is below:

“Apple pays every euro of every tax that we owe,” the company said in an e-mailed statement. “We have received no selective treatment from Irish officials. Apple is subject to the same tax laws as scores of other international companies doing business in Ireland.”

Apple last year faced a U.S. Senate hearing on its offshore tax practices in which it denied taking advantage of any tax loopholes in Ireland. The SEC also closed its own investigation without establishing any wrong-doing in October of last year.

Euro Stories December 2, 2013

Today, Apple has launched a promotion for online purchases, offering 0% financing on any purchase above £449 (or €400). The deal is on offer across most of Apple’s European websites, including the UK, France, Italy and Spain.

In the UK, for instance, a customer can buy any product above that value and spread repayments across ten monthly instalments with 0% interest. In other countries, such as France or Spain, the repayment is window is slightly longer at twelve months.

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Euro Stories October 28, 2013

Apple ordered to pay 12 million euros in France for unpaid iPad taxes

Earlier this year we reported that SACEM, the French society of authors, composers, and music publishers, noted Apple was ordered to pay around 5 million Euro in unpaid taxes for iPads sold in 2011. SACEM distributes the copie privée royalties, which are paid to Copie France for all devices capable of transferring and displaying copyrighted material. Today, PC INpact (via igen.fr) notes that a court in Paris has once again ordered Apple to pay for unpaid iPad taxes, this time around 12 million Euros for iPads sold between March and December of 2012. Some think Apple’s recent price increases in France could be to compensate for the copie privee taxes it hasn’t had success with avoiding. When asked about the price increases, French authorities were recently quoted as saying Apple has has yet to pay a penny towards the unpaid taxes. 

Euro Stories October 17, 2013

Apple slightly increases prices of iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c in France

First noted by iGen.FR, Apple has slightly raised the prices of the iPhone 5s and 5c in France. As shown above, the increase ranges between €10 for the 16 GB model, €12 for the 32 GB model and €18 for the 64 GB model. In terms of dollar value, when converted, these changes are equivalent to a rise of about $13 – $25.

The same price increase applies to the 5c, again dependent on capacity, going from €599 to €609 for the 16 GB model and from €699 to €711 for the 32 GB variant.

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