HM REVENUE & CUSTOMS (HMRC) has whacked Apple with a £136m tax bill following an "extensive audit" of the US tech giant's books.
So says The Financial Times (paywalled), which potted the payment in the financials of Apple Europe, a London-based subsidiary that performs sales support, marketing and other duties for other Apple subsidiaries.
The audit is believed to have found that Apple Europe was not paid fair value for the services it provided to other Apple subsidiaries, leading to a lower taxable income for several years up until 2015.
HRMC is said to have concluded that "this payment of additional tax and interest reflects the company's increased activity."
HMRC wouldn't confirm this, though, instead saying in a statement: "We do not comment on the tax affairs of individual companies. Multinational companies must pay all taxes due and we don't settle for less. Last year alone, HMRC secured and protected over £8bn in additional tax revenue from the largest and most complex businesses."
Apple Europe has commented, though, saying in a statement: "We know the important role that tax payments play in society. Apple pays all that we owe according to tax laws and local customs in the countries where we operate.
"As a multinational business and the largest taxpayer in the world, Apple is regularly audited by tax authorities around the world. HMRC recently concluded a multiyear audit of our UK accounts and the settlement we reached with HMRC is reflected in our recently filed accounts."
Apple Europe also mentioned tax payments will increase in the future to reflect this new understanding with HMRC.
Last year, the European Commission (EC) ruled that Ireland gave Apple illegal tax benefits worth up to €13bn, and has demanded that the iPhone maker pays back every penny.
"Member states cannot give tax benefits to selected companies. This is illegal under EU state aid rules. The EC's investigation concluded that Ireland granted illegal tax benefits to Apple, which enabled it to pay substantially less tax than other businesses over many years," the EC said at the time. µ
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