Former British Prime Minister and Her Majesty’s evil little helper Tony Blair gets a cool £41,000 a month as a retainer fee from the PetroSaudi oil company according to a series of documents seen by the Guardian. The documents show he was paid because he used his influence to help the company enter the Chinese market; the company is owned by Prince Turki bin Abdullah, the son of the late King Abdullah, who was ruler when these transactions occurred in 2010. According to the contract, the company was not allowed to reveal Blair’s role without permission, for fear that he might be targeted by the City regulator, over concerns Blair was advising on deals for investors for a corporate function, which required oversight by the regulator; this Blair did not have, and thus, he was conducting business, that he was not authorized to conduct.
Blair began lobbying for PetroSaudi in the summer of 2010, and according to emails seen by the Guardian, by the end of the year he had arranged a meeting between the chairman of the China National Petroleum Corp., one of the largest companies in the world, and PetroSaudi in Saudi Arabia.
While the documents from PetroSaudi show they had pressed for him to “help deliver transactions, not just make the intros,” there is no evidence that Blair carried out any transactions, and the Guardian writes that there was nothing illegal in any of these talks. Nonetheless it is not clear if Blair is still receiving the retainer fee of £41,000 a month, perhaps for other services. Nor is it explained why such a well-placed company needs Blair for introductions to the Chinese. Or was the money for something else?
The Guardian quotes Blair’s spokesman as having said, “his role was made known to the regulators…and he has never undertaken any activity other than making introductions. He does not do ‘deals.'”