Apple Drops €850m Irish Data Centre Plans

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Apple has thrown in the towel following a three-year battle regarding the plans of the company to establish a €850m (£743m) data centre that is located in Ireland.

The technology titan has abandoned its plans after becoming entangled in the Irish courts because of local opposition to the construction in Athenry, County Galway, which would have taken up approximately 500 acres of forest, that was first sent for approval way back in 2015.

A spokesperson from Apple stated: “Despite our best efforts, delays in the approval process have forced us to make other plans and we will not be able to move forward with the data centre.

“While disappointing, this setback will not dampen our enthusiasm for future projects in Ireland as our business continues to grow.”

The tech giant has operated in Ireland since 1980 and has a huge campus in Cork. The company assured that it would continue to expand the operations in the city and that Apple, Inc. was “deeply committed to our employees and customers in Ireland.”

Despite the local resistance, the Irish government said that it did everything to support the investment and that the government “regretted” the choice of not pursuing the construction work in Athenry.

This is the most recent stumbling block for Apple in Ireland. Much similar to Facebook, it was attracted by the promise of low corporate tax rates.

In 2016, however, Europe urged the officials of Ireland to take more tax from the firm, despite the push-back from all sides. The European Commission said that the tax that Apple paid on its operations in Ireland was so low that the figures amounted to illegal state aid.

This month, it started paying the €13bn (£11.4bn) that were owed to the government, which will be kept in an escrow account while it appeals the decision.