The European Commission is willing to withdraw its court case against the Irish government for failing to collect some US$16 billion in back taxes from Apple, but only if the country collects the full amount, the EU’s Competition Commissioner said in an interview.
“In our opinion, it has taken too long,” Margrethe Vestager told CNBC. “But from what I hear from the Irish, they are getting there. So, of course, we hope that soon, the recovery can happen in full, because if that happens we will withdraw the complaint that we have filed with the courts.”
Media reports last week suggested that Ireland is calculating how much money Apple needs to pay back and that such calculations should be done before the end of April. So far, the Irish authorities said that their estimations are close to the Commission’s €13 billion (US$15.9 billion) figure.
Speaking to CNBC, Vestager said it has taken Ireland “too long” to recover the money, but she understands that the process is complex.
“Of course, we look at the difficulties that (are) related to the case,” she said. “But it is important for us that it happens, and this is why… On the process alone of recovery, unpaid taxes, we have asked the court to look into it.”
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