Apple Wins Approval for $1 Billion Data Center in Ireland

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple has won approval to build a $1 billion data center in the west of Ireland, successfully fending off an environmental legal challenge brought by local residents (via Reuters).

    Ireland's High Court on Thursday ruled that the proposed data center in Galway county, planned by Apple since February 2015, could proceed despite locals' various environmental concerns for the area if Apple successfully built the facility.


    The residents against Apple attempted to halt construction last November by claiming that the permission it was granted by independent planning body An Bord Pleanála was invalid.

    They alleged that An Bord Pleanála hadn't performed a proper environmental impact assessment of the proposed data center at Derrydonnell. Apple successfully asked the High Court to fast-track the case, and today's approval will likely bring the legal proceedings to an end.

    When Apple announced the Irish data center in 2015, it also announced one for Denmark. That center is expected to begin operations later this year.

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Apple Wins Approval for $1 Billion Data Center in Ireland
  2. burgman macrumors 68000


    Sep 24, 2013
    Quid pro quo, don’t touch my tax breaks. White collar at its highest level.
  3. NomadicTy macrumors regular

    Feb 11, 2007
    Ireland's economy have had a rapid rise, and it's never been better, and it is all because of these "tax breaks" they've given to corporations. Even leftist Bono admits that.
  4. truthertech, Oct 12, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017

    truthertech macrumors 68000

    Jun 24, 2016

    Any honest discussion of "tax breaks" would include, but usually doesn't, an explanation that the tax funds that the government is giving a "break" on, wouldn't exist if the company in question didn't invest. For example, Apple may be given an incentive/break to build a data center in a particular country, but if Apple didn't build that factory there would be zero funds from which to give a break. I'm not arguing all incentives make sense, but unfortunately, the majority of people hear about a tax break, and assume the government is taking money out of the treasury to give to the company when that is almost never the case. Foxconn's recent investment in Wisconsin is a great example as critics are ignorantly pointing out that it is "costing" almost a hundred thousand dollars per job by the State to get the factory built when, in fact, the state is making money and creating thousands of jobs because the tax breaks are in the form of foregoing taxes that the state would never receive from Foxconn if Foxconn didn't build the factory, not from the State's general treasury of funds.
  5. thisisnotmyname macrumors 68000


    Oct 22, 2014
    known but velocity indeterminate
  6. NomadicTy macrumors regular

    Feb 11, 2007
    I wanted to go into that detail as well, but I did not want to start a debate with the "fair share" crowd who think government deserve a cut every time money is passed between entities and borders. In the case of Apple, they pay tons of taxes on employee taxes, sales taxes, customs taxes, and other taxes that one individual would not even comprehend. That's why they have to have teams of tax experts per country just to comply.
  7. joueboy macrumors 68000

    Jul 3, 2008
    If it’s environmental concern then why Apple still preceded with the plan. I thought they’re all for environmental company. I guess if it suits them and make them looks good, they’re all over it. But if not then they don’t care and let the money work for them.
  8. bladerunner2000 macrumors 68020


    Jun 12, 2015
    Great news for shareholders... terrible for US citizens expecting corporations to pay their fair share of taxes.
  9. v0lume4 macrumors 68000


    Jul 28, 2012
  10. Vanilla35 macrumors 68040


    Apr 11, 2013
    Washington D.C.
    Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the relatively thorough explanation, but if one knows anything about how business or transactions work, then this is self evident. If someone is not aware of this, then they simply have no right to promote an opinion that stems from lack of knowledge.
  11. The Mercurian macrumors 68000

    Mar 17, 2012
    It was local residents taking a case against the granting of planning permission citing environmental concerns. That doesn't mean there are genuine environmental concerns. Could be just someone trying to block it for other reasons known only to themselves. Either way the court is letting it go ahead.
  12. NervousFish2 macrumors regular


    Mar 23, 2014
    These kinds of arguments are almost always fallacious. Foxconn and Apple are corporations that take massive advantage of subsidies throughout their supply chain. Gasoline alone, in the USA, is highly subsidized. Moreover, the roads they use. The educations of their employees. The R&D done in publicly-funded universities that they draw on. Who pays for all of that? We do. Because of all these special deals, the effective corporate in the USA is something close to 1%. Its nothing like that its supposed to be, legally. We all know the stories of those years where Bank of America and G.E. paid only $1.00 in federal taxes.

    Bottom line: Apple is a huge company, making vast profits, and sitting on a giant pile of cash. Many other large companies have giant unproductive piles of cash, too. This is reminiscent of where the world economy was prior to the Great Depression. The cash is dormant, or unproductive, because of lack of consumer demand for goods and services. Giving companies tax breaks does nothing to fix this. It creates false economies, by giving the impression that Foxconn actually wants to be in the USA, as opposed to just doing a political favor for Trump. But the economy still hasn't recovered from 2008, and won't, to be frank, until the government engages in a serious fiscal expansion. The US economy lost thousands of jobs last quarter. We're not out of the woods. Far from it. So, we need something like a New Deal. And the only way to accomplish this will be to tax those massive hordes of corporate cash.
    --- Post Merged, Oct 12, 2017 ---
    What motive would the local citizens have to pull a stunt like that? Ireland has been screwed over by tax-dodging corporations for decades now.
  13. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.
    Isn't this about that forest which has to be cut while if Apple build this server farm just a few hundred meters further down 'the road' it won't need to be cut, if so then:

    This is a sad day.
  14. steve23094 macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2013
    There are always many nuances to these sort of sweetheart deals. I don't subscribe to the theory that the presence of big business is always beneficial to the communities they reside in. Is the data center a good deal for the locals? Unlikely considering a data centre has a low head count and the employees will probably be shipped in from elsewhere.

    In reference to tax breaks and your idea that the money wouldn't exist otherwise, a lot of that depends on whether those companies actually go on to pay a relevant amount of tax. If a companies effective tax rate is approaching zero (which Amazon's, Google's and Apple's does in the UK) then government can indeed be literally paying for the 'privilege' of their patronage. In 2012/13 the UK Government spent £58.2bn on subsidies, tax breaks and grants to business. In the same period it took £41.3bn in corporation tax. Why should normal tax paying citizens be paying for shareholder profits? That seems pretty damn unfair to me.
  15. joueboy macrumors 68000

    Jul 3, 2008
    Then Apple should have conducted a study if there is really a potential environmental issue. If the judge only makes decisions then either Apple used it to influence the favor for them.
  16. steve23094 macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2013
    In the UK employees themselves pay the vast majority of their own taxes. In the UK sales taxes are paid by the consumer. What about where you're from?
  17. theBB macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    The only problem with your narrative is another missing discussion: If low taxes are so good for job creation, why does only the well connected big companies get such breaks, but the small ones get taxed at the higher nominal rates that voters discussed and decided through the legislature? If somebody has to pay for the infrastructure, well educated workforce, law & order etc that enables these companies to run world class facilities, why shouldn't every company get the same tax break per job rather than only the deep pocketed ones?

    By the way, Ireland is offering the reviled 12.5% corporate tax rate to every entity. Wisconsin, not so....
  18. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    1%? Citation please.

    According to NPR, who sourced nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office data, the effective corporate tax rate in the USA is 29% for corporate income (the third highest in the world) and it is 18.6% for corporate investments (the fourth highest in the world):


    Every other article I found is also in those general ranges.
  19. extrachrispy macrumors regular


    Jul 29, 2009
    Austin, Texas
    I'm sure you'll be able to provide evidence for these claims. I see that @ActionableMango has already shown the 1% claim to be wanting.

    The cash is dormant, or unproductive, because the U.S. corporate tax rate has incentivized companies like Apple to keep it parked overseas.

    The government engaged in the largest fiscal expansion in history since 2008, by more than an order of magnitude.

    The exact opposite of what you claim is what is actually true. Keynesianism is a dead end.

    @truthertech and @VanilllaCracker have it right. The one correction I'd offer is that if a region has to give a special tax break to entice a company to site there, then that region's tax rate is too high.

    In the end, companies and corporations do not pay taxes. They pass them along to their customers in the form of higher prices.
  20. ksnell macrumors 6502a


    Aug 26, 2012
    So this is over "a few hundred meters" of forest? Really?
  21. The Mercurian, Oct 12, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017

    The Mercurian macrumors 68000

    Mar 17, 2012
    Why would you trust a report done by Apple? They would have a conflict of interest doing their own report. However the planning authority has responsibility for this and they approved it. Then (some) locals objected - as is their right. You are blaming this on Apple. This isn't about Apple, this is Ireland wacky planning process:

    Edit: More details:
    Edit2: Even more details:

    Edit3: Ridiculous levels of details:

    Last one tells you more whats going on on the ground and about the actual complainaints

    Edit4: And the main objector has form:

    Basically this is mostly trolling of the Irish planning system which you can see if you read the above links
  22. BaltimoreMediaBlog macrumors 6502a


    Jul 30, 2015
    DC / Baltimore / Northeast
    Oh and it's going to fall from a cliff oh so quickly. And it also rats out why Bono was so cozy with W. who was so clueless to all these Irish tax breaks nor did he do anything. Trump is going to force Apple to move all the money back one way or another. Mark this on a calendar that I said it.

    Hypocrisy abounds in the music and movie industry. All I need to do is mention Harvey Weinstein and that is clear.

    This should be switched to a political thread btw.
  23. macass macrumors newbie

    Feb 22, 2012
    I know one thing I own a corporation and I pay lots of taxes including half of my employees social security. state taxes property taxes and federal taxes. As well as pay my employees more than 25 dollars an hour.
  24. macs4nw macrumors 601


    That is one sober looking crowd... instantly crushing my pre-conceived notions about the Irish folks' penchant for appreciating a beverage or two, now and then :D
  25. truthertech macrumors 68000

    Jun 24, 2016

    Your picture doesn't match your description. This is a picture of people who turned out to support Apple!
    --- Post Merged, Oct 12, 2017 ---

    You are ignoring the massive amount of wealth that a company like Apple is adding to the economy in a place like Wisconsin just from the thousands of well paying jobs. I won't take the space to explain it all, but you can look it up. The multiplier effect from the salaries of these employees in Wisconsin, for example, will be in the billions for the state. And that's just the ecumenic benefits. I know you wouldn't ignore the human side of thousands of people getting good paying jobs.

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