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Ireland to File their Appeal with Europe's Court of Justice Tomorrow on Apple Case and Ireland's Tax Subsidies

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1af x 88 cover court of justice of the european Union - ECJ - to hear Irish and apple appeal


In October I noted in a report that the "majority of Irish voters believe the Government is right to appeal the European Commission ruling in the Apple case," according to an Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll. When asked whether the Government was right to appeal the ruling that Apple should pay €13 billion in back tax, 47 per cent said yes, 39 per cent said no. With the majority clearly in hand, Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan will file their appeal with the European Union Court tomorrow over Apple's record 13 billion-euro (US$14.4 billion) tax bill that will potentially triggering years of litigation.


Bloomberg reports that "The nation will file its appeal against the European Commission's decision to force Ireland to claw back alleged tax subsidies, in a case that will test the EU's powers to use state aid law in what governments argue are national affairs."


The challenge at the EU General Court in Luxembourg will join a handful of pending appeals by other EU nations and companies that received similar decisions in the past year, targeting tax rulings regulators deemed to be unfair. The EU's Apple decision was the biggest ever state-aid payback demand.


Earlier today Noonan said at the European Parliament in Brussels that "The government fundamentally disagrees with the European Commission's analysis and the decision has left the government no choice but to take an appeal to the European courts, and this will be submitted tomorrow."


Reuters noted back in September that the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) will also be the court in any appeal that Apple brings forward as well.


"The court usually backs the Commission, but lawyers say it sometimes disagrees in state aid cases where it usually comes up against countries. Some lawyers say ECJ judges are influenced by political considerations and that if the Commission's rulings prompt a major spat with the United States and member states don't support the Commission, the court may hesitate to enforce a tax demand of up to 13 billion euros plus interest.


However, so far, the big guns of France and Germany have voiced support for the Apple ruling. In Apple's specific case, the UK declined comment.


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