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Sir James Dyson moves address back to UK from Singapore

·2 min read
 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Billionaire entrepreneur Sir James Dyson has moved his address to the UK, two years after relocating to Singapore.

Companies House records show that details for Weybourne Limited – parent company of Dyson – were updated on Tuesday and now list Sir James’ correspondence address as being in the UK. Dyson’s head office remains in Singapore despite Sir James’ personal relocation.

Sir James attracted criticism for his decision to move Dyson's head office from the UK to Singapore in January 2019. Negative commentary has accused him of hypocrisy for switching the British company’s base to Asia while being a prominent supporter of Brexit.

The inventor has consistently said that the move had nothing to do with the UK’s decision to leave the EU and made commercial sense because many of Dyson's future customers would be in Asia.

Last week he stated that Brexit had given the UK its “freedom” back. "We're a British company – I've put a lot into this country," he told the BBC.

In September he accepted a roughly £7m loss on what was reported to be Singapore's most expensive apartment when he had bought it just a year earlier.

On the latest news, a spokesperson for Dyson said: "We do not comment on private family matters and nothing has changed in respect of the company; the structure of the Group and the business rationale underpinning it are unaltered."

News of Sir James' change of residency came as he found himself drawn into controversy around lobbying in Westminster.

Boris Johnson personally told Sir James he would “fix” an issue over his company’s tax status after he was contacted by the inventor about building ventilators during the height of the pandemic.

Sir James wrote to the Treasury asking for an assurance that his staff would not have to pay additional tax if they came to the UK to work on the ventilator project under the Statutory Residence Test (SRT).

When he did not receive assurance he contacted the prime minister directly by text message, the BBC reported. Labour accused the government of sleaze and called for an urgent investigation into Mr Johnson’s conduct.

Responding to questions about the matter on Thursday, business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said that it was "very good" that business leaders and constituents had "direct access" to ministers and those making decisions in Whitehall.

"I think that in the real world, in reality, people are contacting ministers, contacting MPs, all the time," he told Sky News.

"Business people are contacting MPs all the time, constituents also contact me on my phone.

"I think that in a modern democracy it's very good that people actually can have direct access to ministers and people who are taking responsibility."

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