The European competition authorities are expected to issue a ruling on Apple’s Irish tax arrangement as soon as the second half of this week. Meanwhile, the Irish government is preparing for a fight with the EU to defend its international reputation, reports Bloomberg.
You may recall that the EU competition authorities found that Apple’s tax arrangements were “improperly designed” and favoured the tech giant in order to create jobs in Ireland. Apple has denied the existence of any sweetheart deal and says it has paid every cent it has owed to the Irish government. After voicing its preliminary findings, the EU competition commission initiated an investigation into Apple’s Irish tax matters, and now the regulator is about to announce what it has found during the two years of investigation and possibly advise Ireland to recover taxes from Apple.
Analysts give a wide range of estimates of how much money Apple could owe in back taxes. An earlier Bloomberg analysis put it at $8 billion, but JPMorgan Chase & Co. analyst Rod Hall says the bill could go as high as $19 billion.
However, the Irish Times has different information: The report published earlier today says the figure might be as low as $112 million, but it has been updated to estimate the tax bill to “hundreds of millions of euro”.
Reuters cites two sources familiar with the decision to back its report, saying that Ireland will be told to recoup more than €1 billion in back taxes. The Financial Times, on the other hand, reports that Apple will face a multi-billion-euro tax bill, although the decision itself doesn’t specify the precise amount of money in play. The estimate will be set out by competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager when the findings are released to the public on Tuesday.