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Facebook co-founder gives up US citizenship

WASHINGTON -- One of Facebook's co-founders, Eduardo Saverin, who stands to make a bundle in the social network's share offering, has renounced his U.S. citizenship, records showed.

The move by Saverin, who lives in Singapore, could save the Brazilian native a bundle in U.S. taxes.

Saverin, whose public spat with Mark Zuckerberg was featured in the 2010 film “The Social Network,” is on a list of names published April 30 by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service of those renouncing U.S. citizenship.

His stake in Facebook after a losing a power struggle with Zuckerberg is believed to be between 2 and 4 percent. The website “Who Owns Facebook?” said his share would be worth around US$3.4 billion.

Bloomberg News cited a spokesman for Saverin saying he had decided to renounce U.S. citizenship because he intended to stay in Singapore, where he has invested in several startups.

“Eduardo recently found it more practical to become a resident of Singapore since he plans to live there for an indefinite period of time,” said Tom Goodman, a spokesman for Saverin, in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg, which said Saverin renounced U.S. citizenship last September.

U.S. citizens normally pay taxes on all their worldwide income, regardless of where they live. But Saverin would likely escape much of those taxes because Singapore does not tax foreign-sourced income.

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