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Minister's tax haven stash sparks fury.

A SENIOR SNP minister has come under fire for using tax havens to invest his cash.

Enterprise and Energy Minister Fergus Ewing has tens of thousands of pounds in investment funds based in Jersey and Luxembourg.

The move is legal but allows the Inverness and Nairn MSP to avoid paying higher UK tax rates.

Ewing has pounds 34,935 invested in Templeton Emerging Markets, an investment trust based in Luxembourg.

He also has cash invested in Henderson Far East, a fund based in Jersey. The value is not published, meaning it is less than pounds 28,760.

Ewing transferred his pounds 200,000 portfolio into collective investments to avoid potential conflicts of interest when he became a minister.

But news that some of the funds are in tax havens has sparked anger. Scottish Lib Dem president Malcolm Bruce called for a Government inquiry.

Green MSP Patrick Harvie said: "For a minister to feather his nest in this way is an outrage."

Labour MSP John Park said: "It is a surprise to find the money is not in a blind trust."

Blind trusts have been used by ministers in the past so they are not aware of what shares they own.

Ewing said last night he had acted on advice from civil servants and had not directed where investments were made.

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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 26, 2012
Words:225
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