Commission state aid decisions should not be informed by political agendas – Hayes
Speaking in today’s European Parliament Plenary debate, Brian Hayes MEP said that the Commission’s State Aid decisions should not be informed by political agendas. He said:
“President Juncker spoke this morning in his State of the Union address to the Parliament about the need for a “Political Commission”. The danger with having a Political Commission is that sometimes decisions are based on politics and not law. Decisions that are more about agenda setting.
“In my view there was a determination to get Apple from the start of this investigation, irrespective of the damage done to Ireland. The Apple case will not be decided here. It will be decided in the European Courts. The right of Ireland to appeal this decision must be respected – a decision ratified by the Irish Parliament just last week.
“Ireland makes no apology for attracting investment into our country. The multinational sector in Ireland employs many thousands of Irish people. In Apple’s case, 6000 real Irish people living in real communities doing real jobs.
“The European business environment will not be helped by reinventing competition rules for US or other business that come to Europe. Chancellor Merkel has said that this decision risks sending very mixed messages to US business’s in the EU – I couldn’t agree more.
“The Commission now asks Ireland to collect back taxes from Apple – while at the same time encouraging other Member States to seek a portion of the €13 billion euro.
“Where is the logic in that position? How can that be done? The Commission really need to answer this?”