Newstalk
Newstalk

11.14 27 Oct 2015


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A protest has taken place outside the Department of Finance, calling on the government to make its tax deals with multinationals clear.

The Debt and Development Coalition handed out apples to protest in reference to the alleged low levels of tax Apple pays in Ireland.

Protesters handed out apples to those attending | Image: Sean Defoe

They claim that the rate of corporate tax Apple and other companies are paying is far lower than it should be.

Eamonn Casey from the Debt and Development Coalition is calling on the government to make its tax deals clear.

Newstalk.com's Sean Defoe was at today's protest, as well as a separate demonstration held by former workers at Clerys department store. Watch his report on the demonstrations below:

The protest came just days after a European Union ruling that found 'sweetheart' tax deals between multinational companies and member states are unlawful.

The European Commission finding means coffee company Starbucks and car maker Fiat will have to pay as much as €30m each in back taxes to Netherlands and Luxembourg.

The Commission's statement said it had found, during a year-long investigation into the two tax rulings, that "most of the profits of Starbucks' coffee roasting company are shifted abroad, where they are also not taxed, and Fiat's financing company only paid taxes on underestimated profits".

Fiat insisted its dealings merely amounted to a clarification of pricing rules and did not constitute state aid.

The Dutch government expressed "surprise" at the ruling, saying it was convinced its handling of Starbucks tax was in line with international standards.

That sentiment was shared by the company, which said the decision contained "significant errors".

Its statement added: "Starbucks complies with all OECD rules, guidelines and laws and supports its tax reform process".

"Starbucks has paid an average global effective tax rate of roughly 33% - well above the 18.5% average rate paid by other large US companies".


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