updated 03:16 pm EDT, Tue May 8, 2012
Apple taxes correctly in EU says Luxembourg official
A Luxembourg official has spoken out against a recent investigation into Apple's tax avoidance strategies. In a letter to the editor of the New York Times, an executive director at the Luxembourg Trade and Investment Office defended Apple and the country, saying they are applying EU tax law correctly.
Georges Schmit of the LTIO decried the suggestion that iTunes S.a.r.l. was part of an elaborate plan to avoid paying the US and EU taxes on sales. Pointing out that the EU has 15 to 25 percent sales tax and laws governing indirect taxation through cross-border online transactions, he suggested it was more a consequence of favorable conditions and that the EU was not losing tax revenues from the practice.
The letter helps suggest why so many large companies opt to set up an office in the country, but does not explain US-based issues such as Nevada's absence of corporate taxation.
Luxembourg is seen as Europe's most powerful investment management center, and a noted tax haven, despite being home to just over half a million people.