DUBLIN, Ireland - Ireland has struck a deal with Apple, to collect up to $15 billion in back taxes, pending an appeal before the Court of Justice of the European Union.
The back taxes will for now be held in an escrow account.
The Irish government said in a statement that an agreement had been reached “in relation to the framework of the principles that will govern the escrow arrangements.”
The European Commission had ordered Ireland to collect the back taxes after concluding that two Irish tax rulings allowed Apple to pay less tax than other businesses, which gave it an unfair advantage.
The Commission ordered Ireland to collect back taxes for the years 2003-2014.
It had estimated that the back taxes would amount to as much as 13 billion euros plus interest.
However, at the time, Ireland disagreed with the Commission’s analysis and appealed the decision.
In a statement, Apple said that it remains confident the court will overturn the commission’s decision once it has reviewed the evidence.
Apple’s statement noted, “The Commission’s case against Ireland has never been about how much Apple pays in taxes, it’s about which government gets the money. The United States government and the Irish government both agree we’ve paid our taxes according to the law.”
The Irish Finance Ministry said in a statement, "These sums will be placed into an escrow fund with the proceeds being released only when there has been a final determination in the European Courts over the validity of the Commission's Decision."