EU: Commission may expand Ireland’s tax practices probe

According to an unnamed source, the European Commission has informed Ireland that it may expand its investigation into the nation’s tax practices, which already includes Ireland’s relationship with Apple.

The Commission launched a probe into Ireland, Luxembourg and the Netherlands, and their tax relationships with major companies, over concern that the nations’ lenient tax policies could be considered anticompetitive under EU rules. The investigation will also look at those businesses, which include Apple and Google.

Now, reports say the Commission could expand the case in Ireland; critics say the nation is too lenient with tax rules applied to Apple. Reports say the technology firmed has saved millions of dollars from tax breaks. The Commission, the source said, is concerned that similar tax rules have unfairly been applied to other companies as well.

The tax practices came under EU scrutiny following calls for action by France and Germany, reports say.

In a speech on Friday in Luxembourg, EU tax commissioner Algirdas Semetas spoke out against unfair tax rules and said regulators “must verify that the principles of fair ply are not being undermined.”

Full content: Reuters

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