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Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (R) poses with his wife Akshata Murthy for pictures during a reception to celebrate the British Asian Trust at The British Museum in London. Photo: Pool/ AFP

UK Finance Minister Rishi Sunak and wife, Akshata Murty make Sunday Times Rich list, after scrutiny over UK tax status

  • Rishi Sunak and Akshata Murty faced criticism last month over Murty’s ‘non-domiciled’ tax status which meant she did not pay UK tax on her earnings abroad
  • The couple entered The Sunday Times UK Rich List at number 222 with a reported net worth of US$907-million

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and his wife, Akshata Murty, have made The Sunday Times Rich List for the first time, with their joint £730-million (US$907.2-million) fortune as Russian billionaires tumbled down this year’s rankings.

It comes after the couple’s finances have come under intense scrutiny in recent months.

Last month, it was revealed that Murty had non-domiciled status, which typically applies to someone who was born overseas and spends much of their time in Britain, but still considers another country to be their permanent residence or “domicile.”

It has been estimated Murty’s non-domiciled status could have saved her £20 million (US$24.9 million) in taxes on dividends from her shares in Infosys, an Indian information technology company founded by her father.

Indian wife of UK finance minister is richer than the queen

She later agreed to pay foreign taxes on her British income.

Sunak was cleared of breaching the ministerial code by Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s standards adviser after considering the tax affairs.

Early on Friday, The Sunday Times Rich List revealed they featured at 222 in the list, with the joint forecast of £730 million, driven by Murty’s £690-million stake in Infosys.

Akshata Murty, an Indian citizen, owns about 0.9 per cent of Infosys.

Sunak, a former Goldman Sachs analyst who became chancellor aged 39 in 2020, earlier this week warned the country that the “next few months will be tough.”

Millionaire wife of UK finance minister agrees to stop avoiding UK tax

Meanwhile, the Indian-born Hinduja brothers, Sri and Gopi, topped the list with a net worth of more than 28 billion pounds (US$35 billion).

One notable absentee from the top of the list is Roman Abramovich. The former Chelsea owner slid from eighth to 28th in rankings after his finances plummeted from £12.2 billion last year to £6 billion this year following sanctions, the enforced sale of Chelsea and the sharp fall in his Evraz shares.

The latest ranking of the 250 richest people in Britain also revealed a record 177 billionaires in Britain this year, up from 2021.

It comes as typical British households come under increased financial pressure from rampant inflation, which struck a 40-year-high of 9 per cent in April.

The Sunday Times Rich List, first published in 1989, ranks the 1,000 wealthiest people in Britain. It includes British citizens as well as individuals and families from overseas but who predominantly work or live in the United Kingdom.

Additional reporting Reuters