George Osborne benefited personally from a £6m tax dodging scheme

The Panama Tax scandal has put Prime Minister David Cameron under pressure to answer questions about how much he benefited personally from the tax avoidance of the Cameron family business. While we await the results of further investigation, we already know that the Chancellor George Osborne has definitely enjoyed just such benefits.

Channel 4 News investigated the tax dealings of the Chancellor in 2015, and made an astounding discovery:

Chancellor George Osborne’s family business made £6 million in a property deal with a developer based in a tax haven, a Channel 4 News investigation has found.

Wallpaper firm Osborne & Little teamed up with a secretive corporation in the British Virgin Islands, to draw up plans to redevelop its former London headquarters into housing.

The companies jointly applied for planning permission for around 45 flats and houses, and once given the go-ahead, Osborne and Little sold its site to the offshore firm for £6,088,000.

A legal expert shown contracts obtained by Channel 4 News said Osborne & Little must have known the developer was based offshore, and had the potential to avoid millions in tax.

At the time, the Chancellor was the beneficiary of a family trust that owned at least 15% of Osborne and Little, so would have personally benefitted from the sale.

Read on...

This scandal marked a major conflict of interest with performing the role of being the nation’s tax collector, and the setter of tax collection rules. Yet, rather than the Chancellor being removed from his role, he was permitted to stay.

Since that time, Mr Osborne has made further cuts to Corporation Tax, made a sweetheart deal with Google which saw them pay just 10% of the tax bill owed, all while continuing an assault on public services.

When not transferring the burden of taxation from those with the most to those with the least, Mr Osborne has continued his fire-sale of public assets. By the end of this financial year, he will also have sold off more public assets than any Chancellor in UK history – outperforming the most ruthless privateers of the Thatcher era.

After six years of this asset-stripping and tax-avoiding, the UK’s current account deficit is not only worse than it was in 2010, it is worse than during ANY period since records began in 1955. Furthermore, the Chancellor continues to miss his own targets on reducing the fiscal deficit (taxes versus spending), all while clocking up more debt in his first three years in parliament than even New Labour managed to in the previous 13.

That is the kind of performance that will put George Osborne in the history books – as the worst Chancellor in UK history.

Featured Image via Flickr Creative Commons

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed