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Home Government Tech Policy Apple in NZ – $4.2b in revenue, zero tax paid: report

Apple in NZ – $4.2b in revenue, zero tax paid: report

The world's richest technology company Apple paid no tax in a decade in New Zealand, despite raking in NZ$4.2 billion in revenue.

iPhones accounted for a quarter of smartphones sold in the country in 2016, the New Zealand Herald reported, adding that 221,000 iPhones had been sold in the three months to December 2016.

The newspaper said the NZ$4.2 billion figure came from Apple's local subsidiary, Apple Sales New Zealand.

While NZ$37 million was paid in tax over the decade, all of this went to the Australian Taxation Office, an arrangement that has been in place since 2007.

Apple has been under fire in various quarters over its innovative tax arrangements. It faces a €13 billion tax demand from the EU, over its tax arrangements in Ireland.

Australia has attempted to get Apple to pay what it deems to be its fair share of tax but nothing has eventuated yet.

If profits reported in NZ had been similar to the global figure, then New Zealand would have reaped NZ$356 million in taxes, the paper said.

It quoted the joint leader of the NZ Greens, James Shaw, as saying: "It is absolutely extraordinary that they are able to get away with paying zero tax in this country.

"I really like Apple products - they're incredibly innovative - but it looks like their tax department is even more innovative than their product designers."

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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.