Social Democrats call for Dáil vote on Apple appeal to be deferred until full ruling published

Róisín Shortall has said it appears the Dáil sitting is simply an attempt "to rubber stamp the legal action Ireland will take"

Social Democrats call for Dáil vote on Apple appeal to be deferred until full ruling published

Roisin Shortall. Image:

The Social Democrats are calling for the Dáil vote on appealing the European Commission's Apple ruling to be deferred until the full ruling is published.

The Dáil is being recalled tomorrow to approve the Cabinet's decision to appeal the decision, which saw Apple ordered to pay €13bn in back taxes and found that Ireland had granted illegal state aid to the tech company.

A review of tax arrangements in Ireland will also be carried out following calls from independent ministers.

While the Department of Finance is expected to issue a briefing document ahead of tomorrow's debate, the full 150-page ruling has not been published.

It is not expected to be published for several months, with junior finance minister Eoghan Murphy having told the Irish Independent: "The decision is a European Commission document and contains information of a confidential and commercially sensitive nature relating to Apple."

Yesterday, Labour said it would "insist" on three amendments to the Government motion to be debated tomorrow.

The Social Democrats now say they will also table an amendment - which will include a call for a deferral and an "immediate commitment to close any current loopholes which allow for the avoidance of tax".

Róisín Shortall, co-leader of the Social Democrats, said: “It appears that tomorrow’s Dáíl sitting is little more than an attempt by the Government to rubber stamp the legal action Ireland will take against the Commission’s ruling. How can those who have not seen the ruling debate, with complete clarity, the merits of a costly and drawn out legal appeal?"

She added that the party is concerned "that something of a snap decision has been taken by the Government to appeal the Apple tax ruling without taking account of the likely substantial costs involved and the possible reputational damage to our country".