Ireland Divided on Whether to Appeal Apple Tax Ruling
The Irish cabinet doesn’t seem to unanimously agree with Finance Minister Michael Noonan’s recommendation to lodge the appeal, as he disagrees with the EU Commission’s instruction to recoup $18.9 billion in back taxes from Apple.
According to the Financial Times, Irish prime minister Enda Kenny will conduct an emergency cabinet meeting in an effort to forge an agreed response to the aforementioned ruling handed down yesterday.
The problem is that ministers are not unanimous that appealing against the decision is the right action, and some cabinet members aren’t willing to rush a decision ahead of crunching the 130-page argument Margrethe Vestager and her team put together to underpin the Commission’s ruling.
In a letter penned yesterday, Tim Cook was confident that Ireland would appeal against the ruling, as will the company he leads. However, political observers say that if Enda Kenny cannot persuade his cabinet to adopt a unanimous stance, his government could eventually fall, even though it has been in office for just a few months, the Financial Times notes.
Irish ministers insisted the ruling is unfair and contradictory. Irish foreign minister Charlie Flanagan described the decision as “baffling” and said “there are a number of glaring inconsistencies in what the commission says”, according to the FT. But Kenny also needs to convince opposition politicians and a range of civil society groups to agree to an appeal.