Belfast Telegraph

PM Cameron acts to crack down on offshore corruption

By PA Reporters

David Cameron has set out new measures to make it harder for people to hide the proceeds of corruption offshore, as Jeremy Corbyn and George Osborne published details of their tax returns.

The Chancellor's release showed he received a total taxable income of £198,738 in 2014/15, including £44,647 in the form of dividends and rental income of £33,562, and that he paid income tax of £72,210. The figures showed Mr Osborne was earning enough to benefit from his cut in the top rate of income tax from 50p to 45p.

Meanwhile, Mr Corbyn declared just £1,850 of taxable income in 2014/15 over and above his parliamentary salary. The Labour leader had to pay a £100 fine after filing the return late.

In a Commons statement, Mr Cameron - who published details of his own tax return at the weekend - said he believed there was a "strong case" for the Prime Minister, Leader of the Opposition, Chancellor and shadow Chancellor to make their tax affairs public, but did not think the same should apply to all MPs.

"If this were to come in for MPs, people would also ask for a similar approach for those who ask us questions, those who run large public services, or lead local government, or indeed those who edit the news programmes or newspapers," he said.

Labour complained that Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne had avoided "full disclosure" as they published summaries of their returns which were "as transparent as dishwater" rather than releasing the original documents.

Mr Cameron, who inherited £300,000 from his father and received gifts worth £200,000 from his mother Mary, accepted he had not handled the row over his father's Blairmore unit trust well.

He added it was right to "tighten the law and change the culture" to crack down anyone involved in tax evasion and aggressive avoidance", but the Government should "defend the right of every British citizen to make money lawfully".

Belfast Telegraph

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