Apple has entered the second phase with regards to the launch of the iPhone X and is now making it available in 14 additional countries. On November 23, the iPhone X will hit the stores in Israel and then on November 24, sale of the device will start in 13 other countries. These include Turkey, Thailand, South Korea, South Africa, Serbia, Montenegro, Malaysia, Macedonia, Macau, Kosovo, Cambodia, Bosnia and Albania.
Besides the smartphone itself, the sale of iPhone X accessories will also begin concurrently on the above-mentioned countries. In most of these territories and countries it is carriers and third-party resellers who will be selling the device. Apple however has one retail outlet in Macau and two in Turkey. The Cupertino, California-based tech giant will also make iPhone X available online in a couple of these countries.
Apple’s second phase in expanding the availability of the iPhone X comes in the wake of the leaking of the Paradise Papers which have provided details on Apple’s tax-avoidance strategies ever since its tax practices in Ireland ignited controversy. According to the leak, Apple moved its offshore cash to Jersey’s Channel Island from Ireland after the crackdown. Currently Apple’s untaxed offshore cash stands at $252 billion.
The iPhone maker has however refuted claims that its new arrangement has helped it lower its taxes and insists that it still retains the crown of the biggest taxpayer in the world. In the last three years Apple has paid corporation taxes amounting to around $35 billion.
Prior to 2014 Apple had making use of a tax law loophole in both Ireland and the United States referred to as ‘double Irish’. The loophole let the tech giant funnel all the sales it had made outside the Americas via subsidiaries in the Republic of Ireland. These subsidiaries were stateless and consequently paid little or no taxes.
Rather than pay a corporation tax of 35% in the United States or 12.5% in the Republic of Ireland, the tax avoidance structure of Apple allowed it to reduce its foreign tax payments obligations to slightly above 5%. Apple’s revenues generated outside the Americas constitute about 55% of the tech giant’s combined revenues.
In a U.S. Senate hearing the chief executive officer of Apple, Tim Cook, however defiantly defended the company’s tax system saying the iPhone maker fulfilled all its tax obligations.
“We pay all the taxes we owe, every single dollar. We do not depend on tax gimmicks… We do not stash money on some Caribbean island,” said Cook.