Swraj Paul

From Powerbase
Revision as of 10:49, 16 February 2015 by Josh Leeson (talk | contribs)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to: navigation, search

Swraj Paul, Baron Paul (born 1931) is an Indian-born, British-based business man. He was knighted by the Queen in 1978.

In 1996 he became a life peer, taking the title Baron Paul of Marylebone in the City of Westminster.


Swraj Paul was born in Jalandhar in 1931. His father ran a small foundry, making steel buckets and farming equipment. Swraj Paul was educated at the Punjab University and later obtained a Master's degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US.[1]

On his return to India, Swaraj joined the Apeejay Group, which his father had founded. It was a twist of fate that he had to visit London to get his daughter treated for leukemia. He took over the operations of Apeejay Overseas and relocated permanently to London in 1966. After the Apeejay family partition, Lord Swaraj Paul renamed the company Caparo. From acquiring one steel unit, he went on to acquire more and founded the Caparo group in 1978, which developed into one of the leading producers of welded steel tube and spiral welded pipe in the UK. He stepped down from the management of the Caparo group in 1996, handing over his empire to his three sons.[2]

New Labour links

Lord Paul owns Caparo Industries, a steel manufacturing business, which gave £101,000 to the Labour Party in 1998, £76,000 in 1997 and £109,000 in 1996, and more than £5,000 in 2000. In total, between 1994 and 1998 Caparo gave £387,000 to the Labour Party. This figure includes £47,000 given to the Industrial Research Trust, which funded Gordon Brown's private office before the 1997 election. Lord Paul is a friend of Gordon Brown and was appointed as an official ambassador for British industry in November 1997.

Caparo made £20 million in profit in 1998 and £25 million profit in 1999, with 4,000 employees at plants in Scunthorpe, Hartlepool, Huntingdon and Birmingham. The business is run by his three sons and is based in Baker Street, London.

His family is worth £330 million (Angad, his son, co-produced the film "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels"). Lord Paul's shares in Caparo are held by a company registered in Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, an offshore tax haven. Because he was born in India (he became a British citizen in 1976) Lord Paul was until 2010'non-domiciled' for tax purposes, which allowed him to avoid paying income tax, capital gains and inheritance tax on the millions of pounds he holds 'offshore'.

Lord Paul acted as former UK prime minister Tony Blair's 'unofficial envoy' to India, used as a messenger between the UK and Indian governments. He sat on the Competitiveness Working Party: Promoting The Best Of Best Practice and the West Midlands Regional Competitiveness Working Party.[3]

Political donations

Recorded by the Electoral Commission:

Date Name of donor Amount Donated to Subsidiary (parties only)
28/03/2001 Swraj Paul £10,000.00 Labour Party Central party


HSBC tax avoidance scandal 2015

Lord Paul was named as one of the key political figures to hold a Swiss bank account in the aftermath of the 2015 HSBC tax avoidance scandal. Paul keeps most of his fortune in Geneva, owning accounts totalling up to £240million. Paul was a non-domicile until 2010, when parliamentarians were banned from using the benefit. He gave up non-dom status and claims HM Revenue and Customs were fully aware of his Swiss accounts, which had not incurred any extra tax liabilities. There is no suggestion that he did anything unlawful.[5]



  1. Chance to shine, Lord Paul, accessed 2 Sep 2007
  2. Caparo Group plc, About Us History and Timeline, accessed 2 Sep 2007
  3. Available from search function on red star research
  4. Electoral Commission, Donation Search, accessed 13 February 2015
  5. David Leigh, James Ball, Juliette Garside and David Pegg, HSBC files show Tories raised over £5m from HSBC Swiss account holders The Guardian, 11 February 2015, accessed 13 February 2015
  6. UK Parliament, Select Committee on Economic Affairs First Report Appendix 1 Select Committee on Economic Affairs
  7. PiggyBankKids, Lord Paul of Marylebone
  8. James Dean Firms face lobbying scrutiny, Law Society Gazette, 12 February 2009, accessed 28 October 2014