IRELAND HAS won its appeal against the ruling it is owed more than €13 billion in taxes from tech giant Apple.
In 2016, the European Commission ruled that Apple had to pay Ireland €13 billion in back taxes after they concluded that Ireland 'granted undue tax benefits' to the corporation, allowing them to pay substantially less tax than other businesses.
With their 'nameless and faceless' head office based in Cork, Apple were paying just 0.005% tax, allowing them to retain an enormous amount of their profits made in Europe and elsewhere.
Apple and the Government of Ireland appealed the ruling, and the €13.1 billion in back taxes has since been held in escrow, with neither party allowed to access the money.
Apple and Ireland's appeal went to the second-highest court in Europe, and yesterday the General Court in Luxembourg ruled that the European Commission "did not succeed in showing" that Ireland had given the tech giant illegal state aid.
However, the money, which includes €1.2 billion in interest, could remain in escrow for up to another three years as the case is likely to be appealed yet again, this time by the European Commissioner.
The ruling has proved controversial, as Ireland is facing a budget deficit of up to €30 billion due to the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown.
However, there had been concerns that Apple, which employs 6,000 people, and other large companies would leave Ireland if they were made to pay a higher rate in tax.
In a statement following the newest ruling, Ireland's Department of Finance said:
"Ireland has always been clear that there was no special treatment provided to the two Apple companies -- ASI and AOE.
"The correct amount of tax was charged."