Gordon Brown’s fees on the lecture circuit top £210,000 in two months.
Gordon Brown has earned almost half as much again in lecture fees in two months as David Cameron is paid in a year. A single speech delivered in Dubai earned him a fee almost equal to a year’s salary for an MP. His payments for just four speeches delivered in various parts of the world so far this year come to over £210,000 – not counting any payments in kind in the form of free travel or hotel rooms. David Cameron’s annual salary is £145,000.
Though the fees Gordon Brown commands are no match for Tony Blair’s vast earnings, they would be enough to make him a multimillionaire, except that he decided from the moment he stepped down not to pocket any of his outside earnings, but to live off his MP’s salary alone. A note on the MPs’ Register of Member’s Interests emphasises that all of it “is being held by the Office of Gordon and Sarah Brown for the employment of staff to support my ongoing involvement in public life”. His office, which costs about £550,00 a year to run, supports a range of children’s charities.
Even so, his declared earnings are a striking illustration of how much more the big name politicians can earn outside politics. Gordon Brown’s latest additions to the register, published yesterday, reveal that he was paid £62,622.17 for a single speech delivered to a government summit in Dubai in February. The organisers also paid more than £26,000 in hotel and transport costs for the former Prime Minister and accompanying aides.
Earlier in the same month, he was paid £49,915 for a speech to an export conference in Houston, Texas. Late in January, a speech to the Callan Investments Institute, in San Francisco, earned him £49,455.10. He was also paid £48,898.25 for ‘presentations’ to Trinity University in San Antonio. In each case his hosts also paid for flights and accommodation.
That is in just two months. Multiply by six, and the inference is that the former Prime Minister is on course to generate around £1.2m for the upkeep of his office this year alone.
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