The Government does not accept the Commission’s analysis in the Apple State aid Decision and has lodged an appeal in the European Courts. However, we have always been clear that we are fully committed to ensuring that recovery of the alleged Apple State aid takes place and have committed significant resources to ensuring this is achieved. Given the unprecedented scale of the recovery amount, this has been a complex technical and legal process.
As the Deputy may be aware, on 24 April the Escrow Framework Deed which sets out the detailed legal agreement regarding the recovery of the alleged State aid was signed by me on behalf of the Government and also signed by Apple. This is a significant milestone with regard to the commencement of the recovery of the alleged State aid. This followed recent announcements that the Bank of New York Mellon London Branch has been selected as the preferred tenderer for the provision of escrow agency and custodian services to the fund and Amundi, BlackRock Investment Management (UK) Limited and Goldman Sachs Asset Management International have been selected as preferred tenderers for the provision of investment management services.
The signing of the Escrow Framework Deed now allows for the final processes to be completed including the formal appointment of the Escrow Agent/Custodian and the Investment Managers which in turn activates the process for the collection of the alleged State aid.
It is anticipated that the funds will flow into the escrow account in significant tranches during Q2 and Q3 of 2018 and I expect that the full recovery will be effected by the end of Q3 2018.