Apple Korea’s sales were about seven trillion won and its corporate tax payment 31.3 billion won last year, when it sent 873 billion won, or more than 700 % of its net profit, to its American parent company. For reference, Google Korea’s sales were 220.1 billion won last year, Naver’s sales were five trillion won in 2020, and Naver paid a corporate tax of 492.5 billion won in 2020.
Last year, Apple Korea’s net profit was 124.2 billion won, and its retained earnings from the previous year were 980.9 billion won. More than 870 billion won of the total was paid out in dividends by Apple Korea, that is, sent to the United States.
On this point, Apple Korea’s unique corporate governance structure draws attention. According to Apple Korea, the governing entity is Apple Operations International Limited in Ireland and the highest governing entity is Apple Inc. in California. According to experts, this governance structure aims to avoid taxes.
As profits generated in multiple countries are shifted multiple times, the final corporate tax payment becomes close to zero. Ireland currently does not impose any tax on transactions between a tax haven and an EU Member State.