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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tony Blair's latest business venture: advising Kuwait for £27m

The Mail reports:

Tony Blair’s company stands to earn £27million for advising the oil-rich Kuwaiti government, it was claimed last night.

The former prime minister’s consultancy firm has been ­advising the Gulf monarchy how to govern itself.

Such a payout would indicate that estimates of Mr Blair’s earnings since he left Downing Street – ­usually put in the £20million to £40million range – could be well below the mark.

Kuwait was the first client of Tony Blair Associates, the London-based firm set up by Mr Blair in 2009 to recommend ‘political and economic trends and governmental reform’.

The firm was contracted to produce ‘Kuwait Vision 2035’, a report into the kingdom’s political and economic future which was delivered earlier this year.

But since then Mr Blair and his consultants have been helping to implement the report’s findings, while training a team of ‘super mandarin, British-style’ civil servants to run the country.

A government source in Kuwait said ‘at the moment they have gone over the 12million dinar mark’ for ‘on-going consultancy work related to the report’.

‘Mr Blair got the work because of his high international profile and vast experience of government,’ the source said. ‘The fact that he helped defeat Saddam Hussein’s Iraq didn’t harm his bid either.’

I bet it didn’t.


Anonymous said...

This story highlights one of the biggest problems in politics. How do we deal with politicians who use their positions to enrich themselves after they leave office? Using your position for enrichment while in office is more obvious, but technically there is nothing wrong with using the connections you make while in office to secure lucrative deals afterward.

I think this is why the concept of scaring politicians with electoral defeat means less today. As long as you cultivate the right connections while in office, you can be destroyed at the polls and still get a cushy job as a consultant or lobbyist or whatnot. Perhaps this was always the case, but the scale seems much larger today, with ex-politicians and ex-bureaucrats even working for foreign governments.

Anonymous said...

Hey moron,
ever let facts get in a way or an argument or a 'report'?

"The fact is that there is no evidence whatsoever in this case," said Matti Raatikainen, head of the war crimes unit of Eulex, the European Law and Justice Mission in Kosovo.
Matti Raatikainen, head of the war crimes unit of Eulex Matti Raatikainen says the scandal has distracted from the search for remains

"No bodies. No witnesses. All the reports and media attention to this issue have not been helpful to us. In fact they have not been helpful to anyone."

The main problem, he said, was that the scandal created by the allegations has distracted attention from the real work of finding the remains of 1,861 people still missing from the war and its aftermath, and prosecuting their killers - in Serbia, Kosovo and Albania.

We talked in his makeshift office in a cluster of containers at the Alpha-Bravo base near Pristina airport, as the latest May storm battered the roof.

Burly policemen came and went, surprised to find their boss talking to a journalist. Mr Raatikainen, a quiet Finnish policeman, is not known for his love of the media.