Luxembourg challenges EU order to recover tax from Amazon

FILE PHOTO - The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics center in Lauwin-Planque, northern France on February 20, 2017. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Luxembourg is challenging a European Union order to recover about 250 million euros ($295 million) in back taxes from Amazon, saying it disagreed with EU state aid regulators’ decision that the U.S. online retailer had received special treatment.

The appeal to the Luxembourg-based General Court, Europe’s second-highest, comes two months after the European Commission accused the Grand Duchy of giving illegal tax benefits to Amazon and sparing the company from paying taxes on almost three quarters of its profits.

“Luxembourg believes that the Commission has not established the existence of a selective advantage,” its finance ministry said in a statement. “Furthermore, Luxembourg does not share the Commission’s analysis with regard to transfer pricing.”

Amazon employs 1,500 people in Luxembourg, making it one of the biggest employers in the country of half a million.

Luxembourg has also appealed against a 2015 ruling ordering it to recover up to 30 million euros in back taxes from Italian carmaker Fiat. ($1 = 0.8475 euros)

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; editing by Philip Blenkinsop and Adrian Croft