WASHINGTON – The U.S. Treasury Department said Tuesday it was disappointed with the European Commission seeking to force Apple Inc. to repay tax breaks given by Ireland. A spokesperson for the department said the Commission was acting unilaterally and had department from progress made by the international community to combat tax avoidance. "We believe that retroactive tax assessments by the Commission are unfair, contrary to well-established legal principles and call into question the tax rules of individual Member States," the spokesperson said. The case could undermine "the important spirit of economic partnership between the U.S. and the EU," the spokesperson added. The European Union's Competition Commission ruled that Apple's tax arrangement with Ireland breached state-aid rules and ordered Ireland to recover as much as $14.5 billion in taxes from the tech giant. Apple and Ireland both said they will appeal the ruling.
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