Financial backers

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FOR INDEPENDENCE FOR THE UNION
Ian Taylor

Ian Taylor is one of Britain’s richest men due to the massive profits of the oil-trading giant Vitol which he runs as chief executive. He has donated £500,000 to the Better Together campaign[1]. While not all Vitol’s global profits – $845.9m last year – are made in London, sources have told The Independent that a substantial portion comes from its traders based there and would ordinarily be taxed at the general corporate tax rate – currently more than 21 per cent. Staff in Vitol's offices in London are presented as “intermediaries” when they are actually the brains that make hundreds of millions of dollars a year in profits. This means the profits on their trades are shifted to low-tax Switzerland[2]. Taylor has also given the Conservative party £550,000 since 2006. In 1995, Vitol secretly supplied Slobodan Milošević's government with oil[3] The Observer revealed in 2001 that Vitol paid 1 million pounds to Serbian war criminal Željko Ražnatović to settle an oil deal with Milošević http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/referendum-news/controversial-background-of-no-campaign-donor.20752120. In 2007, Vitol pleaded guilty to grand larceny in a New York court for paying surcharges to Iraq's national oil company during Saddam's regime and circumventing the UN oil-for-food program. Vitol subsequently paid $17.5 million in .[21]


References

  1. The Independent, 23 July 2014
  2. Ibid.
  3. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2001/jul/01/balkans.warcrimes2

Ian Taylor

Vitol's tax structure has been approved by HMRC[1].

Vitol has denied all charges in relation to the Serbian activities, arguing that no government agency has ever prosecuted the company in this respect [2]

References
  1. The Independent, 23 July 2014
  2. http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/referendum-news/controversial-background-of-no-campaign-donor