Australia's Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull
Sydney - XINHUA
Australia's Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has come under fire after investing 1 million Australian dollars (940,000 U.S. dollars) in a hedge fund based in the tax haven Cayman Islands, local media reported Friday.
Financial transparency campaigners told the Sydney Morning Herald that although the investment is legal, it was in conflict with the government's campaign against corporate tax dodging and the offshoring of profits.
Mark Zirnsak, a member of Tax Justice Network, said Turnbull's investment looked to be in conflict with the government's position on wanting to crack down on secrecy jurisdictions commonly known as tax havens, like the Cayman Islands.
Australia is to chair the G20 leader's summit in November and Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Treasurer Joe Hockey have put tax evasion and profit shifting on the agenda.
On Thursday, Hockey moved to stop multinational companies like coal miner Glencore minimizing tax by loading up debt in higher- tax jurisdictions.
However, a spokesman for Turnbull said "Income from his investments is declared and taxed in Australia."