Duke of York dished out PS130k during taxpayer-funded trips abroad

November 21st, 2008 - 6:34 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Nov 21 (ANI): The Duke of York dished out almost 130,000 pounds during 16 taxpayer-funded trips abroad last year, according to official figures.

Prince Andrew spent the whopping 130,000 pounds on hotels and other expenses while he was acting in his capacity as an ambassador for British trade abroad.

His expenses bill is to be published for the first time under Freedom of Information laws.

He has earned the nickname “airmiles Andy” and the “junket of York” for his lavish use of private planes and helicopters at public expense.

Last year he made 16 visits abroad including trips to India, Brazil, America, Japan and the Middle East and the breakdown of the costs of is expected to reveal some tens of thousands of pounds on each visit.

It has also been claimed that the Duke stays in more expensive hotels than those used by Government ministers on official business.

However, senior royal sources insist that he uses “business class hotels” rather than luxurious five-star establishments. They also say that he attracts valuable trade and investment to Britain through his unpaid role.

“This is not a cheap process but the Duke ensures that the taxpayer gets good value for money,” the Telegraph quoted a well-placed source as saying.

“The figures also include the costs incurred by officials who accompany him on the foreign visits,” the source added.

The Duke has been the UK’’s special representative for international trade and investment since 2001. Other countries visited last year also included Singapore, Malaysia, Morocco, Libya and Mongolia. (ANI)

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