Health Care

Apple chose Jersey as new offshore tax haven after Ireland crackdown

Apple chose Jersey as new offshore tax haven after Ireland crackdown”

AOI is believed to manage Apple's enormous overseas cash pile. In a statement to the Guardian, he says the papers show "how these billionaires and multinational corporations get richer by hiding their wealth and profits and avoid paying their fair share of taxes".

Until 2014 it had been exploiting a financial loophole in the United States and Ireland known as the "double Irish". The EU in 2013 made a decision to probe this arrangement, and Ireland cracked down: It announced that firms incorporated there wouldn't be allowed to be stateless for tax purposes, as Apple's Irish subsidiaries were. In Apple's case, it held its cash in Ireland to pay a much smaller tax rate than the 35 percent level in the US.

But after the European Union announced a probe into the tax arrangements in 2013, Apple was forced to find an offshore base that would serve as a tax residency for its subsidiaries in Ireland.

It alleges that Apple lawyers sent a questionnaire to the offshore finance firm Appleby, seeking to discover what tax havens like the British Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, Mauritius, the Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey could do for Apple.

One email exchanged between partners at the company advising Apple on where to move its money reads: "For those of you who are not aware, Apple [officials] are extremely sensitive concerning publicity".

Leaked emails also make it clear that Apple wanted to keep the move secret and for it "only to be discussed amongst personnel who need to know".

The financial secrets of numerous world's elites are trickling out thanks to the release of what are being called the Paradise Papers. The island charges no tax on companies' profits, ICIJ reported.

The 13.4 million documents were obtained by the German daily Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared with other worldwide media organisations.

Last year Apple was hit with a record £11billion ($20.8b) bill by the European Commission. Apple CEO Tim Cook has called the ruling "total political crap" and says there's "no reason for it in fact or in law". Its effective tax rate decreased to 0.005 per cent in 2014, the Commission claimed.

Apple has over 6,000 employees in Ireland and has long insisted it pays everything it legally owes in taxes. The selective treatment allowed Apple to pay an effective corporate tax rate of 1 percent on European profits in 2003, according to the commission previous year.

The tiny island of Jersey in the English Channel has reportedly become a tax haven for companies like Apple.

While the competition watchdog slapped the country with a deadline of January 3 this year, Ireland is no closer to raking in the funds and is only expected to have pinpointed the exact amount of aid it dished out to Apple by March 2018. That maneuver lets the companies avoid paying hefty taxes they could face by bringing the cash back to the US.

It employs about 5,500 people in the country, with its biggest operations in Cork.

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