The Labour Party has helped its biggest financial backer avoid tax worth up to £1.5 million on its largest donation so far this year.
John Mills gave the party shares in his shopping channel company, JML, valued at £1.65 million in January. In an interview with The Telegraph, Mr Mills said that the donation was made in shares rather than cash so the tax on the deal would be significantly reduced.
Describing the donation as “tax efficient”, he said the form of the donation was agreed with figures in Labour’s fund-raising team.
Mr Mills said that if he had given £1.65 million from his own income he would have had to pay nearly half of that sum to the taxman.
Asked why he made the donations in shares, Mr Mills said: “To be honest with you, it is the most tax efficient way of doing this”.