Lord Ashcroft has just released a statement admitting that he's a non-dom, and suggesting that he'll soon become a full UK taxpayer. Here's the key passage:
"My precise tax status therefore is that of a 'non-dom'. Two of Labour's biggest donors - Lord Paul (recently made a privy councillor by the Prime Minister) and Sir Ronald Cohen, both long-term residents of the UK, are also 'non-doms'.
As for the future, while the non-dom status will continue for many people in business or public life, David Cameron has said that anyone sitting in the legislature - Lords or Commons - must be treated as resident and domiciled in the UK for tax purposes. I agree with this change and expect to be sitting in the House of Lords for many years to come." Which, to my mind, draws a rather neat line under the issue – removing the secrecy and uncertainty which made it an issue in the first place, while also pointing the finger at Labour's own non-dom donors. There'll be plenty of folk wondering why Ashcroft didn't just do this earlier.
Hat-tip: Tim Montgomerie