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PM Admits Owning Shares In Dad's Offshore Fund

Sky News logo Sky News 07/04/2016
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David Cameron has admitted he did hold shares in an offshore tax haven fund set up by his late father.

The Prime Minister has faced questions this week over his family's tax affairs after details of the investment fund were reported as part of the Panama Papers leak.

Downing Street initially said it was a private matter before then saying the PM had no offshore funds and trusts, and then making clear the family would not benefit in future either.

In response to a question from Sky's Faisal Islam at an event on Wednesday, the PM said: "I have no shares, no offshore trusts, no offshore funds, nothing like that."

Now in his fifth statement on the matter, Mr Cameron, who has been a high-profile campaigner for more tax transparency, said he and his wife sold shares worth more than £30,000 in Blairmore Holdings.

He insisted it was a "fundamental misconception" that the fund was set up to avoid tax, saying his late father Ian was being "unfairly written about".

He also said he did not have "anything to hide" about his financial affairs.

Mr and Mrs Cameron bought their holding in April 1997 for £12,497 and sold it in January 2010 for £31,500, according to Downing Street.

The PM said he and his wife Samantha's profit was "subject to all the UK taxes in the normal ways" and it was just below the threshold at which capital gains tax would have applied.

Prime Minister David Cameron © Reuters Prime Minister David Cameron

The annual personal allowance for an individual in 2009-10 was £10,100 - meaning jointly the profit was just outside the threshold. 

He told ITV News: "I paid income tax on the dividends, but there was a profit on it but it was less than the capital gains tax allowance, so I didn't pay capital gains tax, but it was subject to all the UK taxes in all the normal ways.

"So I want to be as clear as I can about the past, about the present, about the future, because frankly, I don't have anything to hide.

"I'm proud of my dad and what he did and the business he established and all the rest of it.

"I can't bear to see his name being dragged through the mud, as you can see, and for my own, I chose to take a different path from my father, grandfather and great-grandfather, who were all stockbrokers.

"And I've got nothing to hide in my arrangements and I'm very happy to answer questions about it."

Mr Cameron also repeated he was willing to publish his own tax returns.

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