Ireland starts collecting back-tax from Apple

Ireland starts collecting back-tax from Apple

As part of the EU's 2016 ruling, it said that the tax arrangements Ireland offered Apple between 1991 and 2007 meant that Apple only had to pay tax rates between 0.0005 percent and 1 percent on all of its European profits right up until 2014. The unfair advantage resulted in Apple avoiding as much as 13 billion euros in payments over the course of more than a decade. Since then though, it seems that Apple has reached an agreement with Ireland to pay back €13 billion in back taxes.

The announcement comes after some tension with Brussels, which referred Ireland to the European Court of Justice in October of this year for failing to collect the back taxes. Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said he expected the repayments to begin in the first quarter of 2018, according to the Journal, once terms were hashed out over who would operate the account and manage the fund.

The European Union in 2016 launched a fresh crackdown over taxes paid by tech giant Apple. Dublin indicated the the collection was stalled due to negotiations over the escrow account, set to hold the dues while the decision is appealed in court.

Amazon denied it owed any back tax, saying it did "not receive any special treatment from Luxembourg".

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According to the EU, the tax deal allowed Apple to pay nearly nothing in tax on its European profits between 2003 and 2014.

Apple insists it did nothing wrong and that eventually, its Irish treasure horde will be returned to Cook and crew.

In a statement, Apple said that it remains confident the court will overturn the commission's decision once it has reviewed the evidence.