Statement by the Communist Party of Ireland
30 August 2016
The EU commissioner for competition has found that the Irish state gave preferential treatment to Apple over other companies, so that Apple must now pay €13 billion in back tax, plus interest from 2003 to 2014.
This windfall tax should be put immediately into the National Pension Fund to guarantee future workers’ pensions.
Apple, which made a profit of €16 billion in 2011, paid tax at the rate of 0.05 per cent: that is, for every million in profits it paid €500 in tax. In 2014 it paid only a tenth of this, 0.005 per cent, or €50 per million in profits.
Apple was declaring the profits at its head office in the Irish state, a head office with no employees. There is simply no head office.
The Irish state has in effect been turned into a vehicle for tax avoidance and is now little more than a tax haven. Its economic and social policy has been shaped to meet the needs of global monopoly capital. Ireland’s recorded GDP increased to 26 per cent, largely as an indirect result of various “tax-efficient” schemes. Recent research has shown that the real corporation tax paid by American transnational corporations based in the Irish state is between 2.2 and 6.9 per cent.
While the Irish people have been forced into debt servitude, the Irish state, at the behest of the European Union, willingly took responsibility for the massive speculative banking debt incurred by both Irish and European banks and finance houses, which resulted in savage austerity. At the same time the Irish state and the Irish ruling class were securing sweetheart deals with transnational corporations.
The European Union is no friend to either the Irish or the European working class. The Irish elite are committed to the creation of a very precarious economic base, totally dependent on transnational monopoly capital, resulting in widespread precarious employment.