Sunday 22 October 2017

Noonan only learned of €13bn figure when it was made public

Finance Minister Michael Noonan
Finance Minister Michael Noonan
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

Finance Minister Michael Noonan has insisted that he did not know the scale of the €13bn Apple ruling until it was publicly revealed.

The minister learned of the figure, along with the rest of the world, when it was revealed by Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager during a press conference in Brussels.

It had been widely speculated in the days leading up to the judgment that the figure would be close to €1bn, leading to criticism that the Department of Finance was not prepared for the fallout from the actual announcement.

"I knew for a week that the decision would be coming but I didn't know which day," Mr Noonan said.

"I spoke personally to Margrethe; she said she couldn't nominate a day but that it would be coming.

"She confirmed it would be negative. But we didn't know about the amount of money until she announced it at her press conference on Tuesday."

Meanwhile, Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe described the back taxes being applied to the tech giant as "unprecedented in terms of scale".

"This ruling has seismic and entirely negative consequences for job creation in the future (and) for the ability of our corporation tax rate, which is so essential to job creation, to be maintained and protected," he said.

Irish Independent

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