Usain Bolt refuses to race in UK until tax laws are changed
The sprinter, who won gold medals in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay at the Games in London, objects to a law that sees him taxed on global sponsorship and endorsement earnings as well as any appearance fee – levied at the 50pc higher earning rate – when he competes in Britain.
And despite setting a new world record during the Olympics, the 25 year-old, who earns an estimated $20m (£12.7m) a year, says his UK-based fans won’t see him compete until the tax laws are loosened.
“As soon as the law changes I’ll be here all the time, » Bolt said. « I love being here, I have so many Jamaican fans here and it’s wonderful. »
Bolt had not raced in the UK for three years prior to this year’s Olympics. He only agreed to run in London after HMRC announced a tax amnesty for competitors.
Glyn Bunting, a partner at Deloitte, told Radio 4 that HMRC would not only want a slice of Bolt’s winnings in the UK but also his £12.5m sponsorship deal with Puma.
Avec Usain Bolt, l’expression voter avec ses pieds prend tout son sens !