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Brussels to appeal Apple tax state aid case in Ireland

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Brussels to appeal Apple tax state aid case in Ireland

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(BRUSSELS) - The EU Commission decided Friday to appeal a European Court of Justice judgement which annulled a 2016 EC decision finding that Ireland granted illegal State aid to Apple through selective tax breaks.

In a statement, the EU executive said that the General Court judgement raises important legal issues 'that are of relevance to the Commission in its application of State aid rules to tax planning cases'.

In the Commission's 'respectful' opinion, it also considered that in its judgement the General Court has made 'a number of errors of law'.

"Making sure that all companies, big and small, pay their fair share of tax remains a top priority for the Commission," said EC Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager: "The General Court has repeatedly confirmed the principle that, while Member States have competence in determining their taxation laws taxation, they must do so in respect of EU law, including State aid rules," she said. "If Member States give certain multinational companies tax advantages not available to their rivals, this harms fair competition in the European Union in breach of State aid rules."

The Commission believes it has to continue to use all tools at our disposal 'to ensure companies pay their fair share of tax'.

"Otherwise, the public purse and citizens are deprived of funds for much needed investments – the need for which is even more acute now to support Europe's economic recovery.

"We need to continue our efforts to put in place the right legislation to address loopholes and ensure transparency," said Ms Vestager. "So, there's more work ahead – including to make sure that all businesses, including digital ones, pay their fair share of tax where it is rightfully due."

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