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Apple reaches $350M tax deal with Italy

Apple will pay $350 million in back taxes,

Apple will pay $350 million in back taxes, prosecutors in Milan, Italy, announced Dec. 30, 2015. Apple CEO Tim Cook, right, joins former Italian prime minister Mario Monti on Nov. 10, 2015 at Bocconi University in Milan, where Monti is president. Credit: AP / Luca Bruno

Apple has agreed to pay Italy about $350 million in taxes accrued for several past years, prosecutors in Milan said Wednesday. Its future liabilities will be determined by an international ruling.

The tax evasion case is one of several Italy has brought against global technology companies that have headquarters in low-tax nations like Ireland to avoid paying higher taxes. Italian tax authorities contend that tax is due in Italy on revenues made in the country.

The Italian case is part of a broader crackdown across the European Union, which aims to have multinationals pay tax where they earn their revenue, and not where they have their regional base.

Milan prosecutors confirmed a report in the daily, La Repubblica, that Apple agreed to pay the sum for the years between 2008 and 2013. The prosecutors also said Apple’s tax liabilities for the five successive years will hinge on an international ruling on such cases. They declined to give details.

They also declined to discuss how payment of back taxes might affect a criminal probe, conducted by the prosecutors, into suspected tax evasion by three Apple employees in Italy.

Apple offices in Milan, London and Ireland were closed on Wednesday. Messages seeking comment weren’t immediately answered.

Italian state television said the $350 million payment worked out in the agreement is far less than what Italian tax authorities contend should have been paid over those years.

Italian tax authorities have also examined Facebook’s Milan offices’ books.

In yet another investigation, Google has said it has been working with Italian tax authorities to determine what might be due.

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