Friday 20 April 2018

'Other EU countries will back appeal' - Noonan

Michael Noonan. Pic Tom Burke
Michael Noonan. Pic Tom Burke

Cormac McQuinn and John Dowling

Finance Minister Michael Noonan has indicated that other countries may be "joined in" litigation against the EU commission ruling in the Apple case.

Mr Noonan said that Ireland previously joined Luxembourg, Holland and Belgium in state aid appeals and that he has already received indications of support in return.

He said this would be in "the judicial forum" rather than political support.

He said the support "has to be in the judicial forum and we are not talking about political support."

Last night, the government motion seeking support for an appeal against the European Commission passed comfortably 93 votes to 36 with the support of Fianna Fáil.

Read more: Dáil votes to support appeal against European Commission's ruling on €13bn Apple tax

Noonan described the European Commission's announcement of the Apple ruling on August 30 as an "unexpected early announcement".

He outlined in the Dáil how Commissioner Margrthe Vestager warned him a week in advance about the result of the aid investigation, but did not say exactly when she would announce the ruling.

Mr Noonan was responding to a question from Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin who asked why there was "secrecy" and "choreography" by the Commission "on such an enormous issue that's of significant importance to a member State."

Noonan said he had expected the decision to come in September.

Irish Independent

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