The European Commission (EC) has ruled with finality that Ireland's tax cuts worth €13b to Apple were illegal under the European Union's (EU) rules on state aid.
The tax benefits enabled the U.S.-based technology firm to enjoy lesser tax payments compared to other businesses in the country.
"The Commission'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," said Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.
The ruling, issued in light of the Commission's investigation of the issue in June 2014, determined that Ireland's issuance of two tax rulings in favor of Apple led to lower taxes paid by the firm to the country since 1991.
Ireland's grant of tax benefits to Apple, borne out of the tax rulings' endorsement of two of the firm's companies incorporated in Ireland (Apple Sales International and Apple Operations Europe) with taxable profits ascribe to a fictional head office, gives undue benefit over other firms.
Apple's tax benefits from Ireland effectively reduced the firm's corporate tax rate to between 0.005 percent and 1percent - a moved deemed by the Commission as unfair to other firms. The Commission's latest ruling now requires the country to recover unpaid taxes from the firm between 2003 and 2014, amounting to €13b.
Both Apple and Ireland are expected to submit their respective appeals against the verdict before the Commission, the BBC reported.