A SCOTTISH Tory MP has been criticised for owning over £70,000 of shares in a firm registered in a territory described as the world’s “worst” tax haven.

Alister Jack, who is one of 13 Conservative MPs now in Scotland, has the investment in Jardine Matheson Holdings (JMH), which is incorporated in Bermuda.

An SNP spokesperson said: “Voters will have questions over whether these outside interests will influence Mr Jack’s positions – particularly when it comes to pursuing tax justice.”

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HeraldScotland: Alister Jack

Despite being registered in Bermuda, there is no suggestion that the company has not paid taxes across the world. According to the firms's half-yearly results, tax was paid in Greater China, Southeast Asia, the UK and the “rest of the world”.

In June, Jack won the Dumfries and Galloway constituency after defeating the SNP’s Richard Arkless by 5643 votes.

A farmer, he has significant business interests and declares shares in 16 companies, in 10 of which his personal holding is worth at least £70,000.

One of the entities is “industrial conglomerate” JMH, which is an Asian-based business group. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and provides management services to companies in the wider group.

However, JMH was incorporated in 1984 in Bermuda, a British Overseas Territory that can provide tax advantages to firms that register on the island.

In 2016, Oxfam published a report which named Bermuda as the worst of 15 corporate tax havens. The charity examined practices such as countries offering “unfair and unproductive” tax incentives and zero or extremely low corporate tax rates.

At the time of the report, Oxfam stated that Bermuda’s “characteristics” included zero corporate income tax and zero withholding tax.

The territory’s Finance Minister claimed the report contained “serial errors”, but Oxfam defended the findings.

JMH is chaired by Eton-educated Sir Henry Keswick. Jack declared £3,000 of support from Sir Henry in the following Westminster declaration category: "Support linked to an MP but received by a local party organisation or indirectly via a central party organisation."

Jack also declared £5,000 from Percy Weatherall, who is listed as a JMH director, in the same category on his MP register of interest.

In JMH’s latest half-yearly results, the group’s underlying profit for the first six months of 2017 rose 20 per cent to $765 million, while revenue was $19.4 billion.

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said Jack would not be disposing of the shares, adding: “Quite rightly, there is no law banning politicians – or anyone else – from becoming involved in companies which happen to be registered in Bermuda.”