Top MP compares Prince Charles to Starbucks
tony at cultureshop.org.uk
Sun Jun 30 20:26:07 BST 2013
Charles in tax storm as top MP compares the
Prince to Starbucks and calls for him to pay more
Margaret Hodge MP demanded overhaul of Prince Charles' tax arrangements
Charles has never voluntarily revealed tax arrangements of Duchy estate
Duchy spokeswoman pointed out it is not a public body or taxpayer-funded
By Glen Owen and Brendan Carlin - PUBLISHED:
00:41, 30 June 2013 | UPDATED: 00:41, 30 June 2013
Lucrative: Prince Charles with his wife Camilla,
Duchess of Cornwall, benefits from the Duchy estate
Prince Charles is today facing calls to pay his
fair share of tax after his financial
arrangements were compared by a leading MP to immoral tax avoiders Starbucks.
Margaret Hodge, chairman of the powerful Commons
Public Accounts Committee, demanded an overhaul
of Charless tax arrangements which mean he only voluntarily pays income tax.
His lucrative Duchy of Cornwall estate is exempt
from corporation tax and capital gains tax.
Labour MP Mrs Hodge, who will next month hold a
parliamentary hearing into the Princes tax
affairs, compared the arrangements to those of
the coffee shop chain Starbucks.
She once branded the company immoral for
reportedly paying just £8.6?million in
corporation tax in 14 years of trading in
Britain, although it agreed to pay £20?million after the outcry.
She said the heir to the throne should be
required by law to pay income tax, while the
Duchy should pay taxes in the same way as other businesses.
Mrs Hodge said: Weve just had the example of
Starbucks voluntarily agreeing to pay £20?million
in corporation tax, and while the payment of some
tax is welcome, I dont think anybody should pay a voluntary contribution.
'It should be a fair system that is transparent
and is set and you pay your dues. And I think that goes for everybody.
The MP added: There are concerns over why the
Duchy of Cornwall doesnt pay corporation tax and
whether a fair share of tax is paid from the
profits and income raised in the Duchy.
Household expenditure: The Duchy of Cornwall
provides Prince Charles' income and pays the
expenses of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge
Her comments come in a Channel 4 Dispatches
investigation into Charless business
arrangements through the Duchy of Cornwall, which
provides income to the heir to the throne and
pays the household expenses of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Accounts published only last week showed the
portfolio of land, property and investments
provided Charles with a record £19?million profit
last year, on which he paid £4.4?million in tax
made up of voluntary income tax plus VAT.
The Dispatches programme, to be broadcast
tomorrow, seeks to lift the lid on the Duchys
individual property dealings and transactions
which it claims the Royal estate has never voluntarily revealed. These include:
The £1.3 million-a-year income in rent it
receives from the taxpayer for Dartmoor Prison because the Duchy owns the site.
The £38 million purchase of a huge warehouse
distribution unit in Milton Keynes from which it
receives more than £2 million in rent a year from supermarket chain Waitrose.
The Hole in the Wall bar in Exeter from which the
Duchy takes ten per cent of the profits.
The programme also says it has discovered that
the Duchy made millions of pounds selling off
farms that it bought from the Prudential in 2000.
Two such sales in Oxfordshire led to the Duchy
earning £9.3?million which, says Dispatches,
could have netted the estate a £6?million profit.
But because the Duchy of Cornwall pays no
corporation tax or capital gains tax, it could
have avoided paying more than £1?million in tax
on the deals, the programme claims.
Last night, the Duchy of Cornwall defended its arrangements.
A spokeswoman said: The Duchy of Cornwall is a
private landed estate. It is not a public body,
nor is it funded by the taxpayer.
The Prince of Wales chooses to use his income
from the Duchy, rather than public money, to
cover the great majority of the cost of the
public duties of both himself and the Duchess of
Cornwall, as well as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.
The spokeswoman added: The Duchy probably
provides more financial information within its
annual review than any other private landed estate within the UK.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Size: 248 bytes
Desc: not available
More information about the Diggers350