Ireland says it will 'compromise' over the 12.5% tax it charges Apple amid 15% push by the EU

Tim Cook
Tim Cook (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Ireland says that it is willing to compromise over the 12.5% tax it charges companies like Apple on their profits.
  • This amid a wish from other countries to agree to a 15% tax.

Ireland has told CNBC that it is willing to "engage" with discussions over the 12.5% tax on profits that it charges Apple in the country. It hopes to be able to reach a "compromise" over the 15% that other countries are hoping to agree to.

Ireland has historically used tax incentives to draw companies like Apple and Google to its shores and it's a method that has worked well. But with the United States, UK, and other EU member countries seeking to agree on a standard 15% tax that could leave Ireland without its advantage. And Paschal Donohoe, Ireland's finance minister says it's something that can be discussed according to a Business Insider report.

Paschal Donohoe, Ireland's finance minister, on Friday told CNBC that the country would "engage" in tax-rate negotiations "very intensely.""...and I do hope an agreement can be reached that does recognize the role of legitimate tax competition for smaller and medium-sized economies," Donohoe said.

This all comes as a host of other countries, all part of the G7, agreed to impose a universal 15% tax on profits earned within their borders. The United States in particular argued for the 15% rate, saying that it would be a step towards ending a "race to the bottom" that has lasted decades.

Ireland is something of a hub for Apple including the call centers that power AppleCare. Ireland will be concerned that playing on a level playing field with the likes of the UK, Germany, and others will see Apple's business go elsewhere in the future.

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Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.