Apple agrees to pay $571 million in tax arrears to France

The EU is likely to have a EU-wide tax on global digital companies by the end of March 2019.

In a statement, Apple Inc’s French division stated, it had reached a deal with France to pay an undeclared amount of back-dated taxes, which according to French media estimate is at around $571 million (500 million euros).

Apple’s French division confirmed the tax payment agreement, but did not disclose how much it had agreed to pay.

“As a multinational company, Apple is regularly audited by fiscal authorities around the world,” said Apple France in a statement. “The French tax administration recently concluded a multi-year audit on the company’s French accounts, and those details will be published in our public accounts”.

The settlement amount was reported by French business magazine L’Express/L’Expansion.

France is pushing for a pan-EU tax for the world’s top digital and software companies, including Google, Amazon, Apple and Facebook. These tech giants use complex intra-group arrangements to pay low single-digit tax rates on profits derived from EU customers.

The complex intra-group arrangements are not illegal.

In January, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire had stated he was confident of EU member states arriving at an agreement by March end on an EU-wide tax on global digital companies.

In 2018, Amazon had settled a long-running dispute with French tax authorities over $228.20 (200 million euros) France was seeking from the company.

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