London: Queen Elizabeth is set to be given a 72,000 US dollars (Sh29.1m per month) a week pay rise under a formula devised centuries ago, an official report revealed in Britain on Tuesday.
The Queen’s income is based on a percentage of money earned by the Crown Estate, one of the wealthiest real estate owners in Britain.
In its annual report issued in London, the Crown Estate disclosed that it has delivered a record 405million US dollars (Sh41billion) to the Treasury in the past year.
Unless the current formula is altered, it will mean that in 2017, the Queen’s pay packet will be almost 61 million US dollars, 6.5 per cent higher than the 57 million US dollars (Sh5.7b) she is receiving this year, and representing a 57 per cent increase over what was paid in 2012.
The sum is worked out by paying to the Queen 15 per cent of the surplus made by the Royal Estate, paid two years in arrears.
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The figure can only be changed by three royal trustees, the Prime Minister, Chancellor of the Exchequer and an official Sir Alan Reid, who has the title of the Queen’s Keeper of the Privy Purse.
The three are currently in the process of a review, which could affect the amount due to the monarch next year, a government official said.
A senior spokesman at Buckingham Palace said it was too early to speculate on what the result would be or what amount the Queen would receive for 2017-18.
The report also shows the monarchy cost British taxpayers 53.5 million US dollars in 2015-16, with more than 21 million US dollars (Sh2.1b) spent on the upkeep of royal households such as Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, as well as other royal households and buildings.
The 90-year-old Queen and the royal family’s official travel cost the taxpayer 5.4 million (Sh546.9m) US dollars in the past year, a reduction of more than 1.3 million US dollars (Sh131.6m) compared to 2015. The heir to the British throne, Prince Charles, draws his private income from the Duchy of Cornwall estate.
This rose three per cent to just over 27 million US dollars (Sh2.7b) last year, with the prince paying a tax bill to the Treasury of around 708,000 US dollars. The Crown Estate owns London’s Regent Street as well as the entire seabed around Great Britain. It also owns Windsor Great Park, and Ascot’s famous racecourse, as well as estates and properties in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and across England.
The office of the Crown Estate was started in 1760 when it was agreed that surplus revenue from the crown’s estate would go to the Government Treasury. In return, reigning monarchs receive an annual payment, 15 percent of the annual surplus of the estate to support official royal duties.
“Despite our modern commercial approach, the estate dates from 1066, with ownership of some property tracing back to the Edward the Confessor,” a spokesman for the Crown Estate said.