Luxembourg doesn’t want to claim back €250 million ($295 million;
£221 million) from Amazon in back taxes.
The European Commission ruled on October 4 that the
small EU nation, which charges less corporation tax than most
other European countries, had given illegal state aid to Amazon.
But Luxembourg challenged the decision on
Friday, saying it disagreed with the EU regulator’s findings.
“Luxembourg believes that the Commission has not established the
existence of a selective advantage,” Luxembourg’s finance
ministry said in a statement on its website. “Furthermore,
Luxembourg does not share the Commission’s analysis with regard
to transfer pricing.”
Amazon has around 1,500 staff in Luxembourg, according to
Reuters. That makes it one of the biggest employers in the
country, which is home to just 500,000 people.
Luxembourg also appealed against a 2015 ruling that ordered it to
recover up to €30 million (£35 million; £26 million) back taxes
Luxembourg isn’t the first country to appeal a European
Commission decision on back taxes. Last year Ireland said it didn’t want to
claim back €13 billion ($15 billion; £11.5 billion) from
Apple. Ireland’s finance minister, Michael Noonan, said at the
time he wanted to appeal the decision before the European courts.
Here is the full statement on Luxembourg finance
The Luxembourg government has decided to appeal to the European
Commission’s decision in the Amazon case.
Luxembourg believes that the Commission has not established the
existence of a special advantage within the meaning of Article
107 TFEU. Furthermore, Luxembourg does not share the
Commission’s analysis with regard to transfer pricing.
This appeal seeks to obtain legal certainty, and does not put
into question Luxembourg’s strong commitment to tax
transparency and the fight against harmful tax practices.
Luxembourg fully adheres to the OECD / G20 BEPS project, which
will modernize international tax rules and create a global
level playing field.