Government acts to ensure financial stability
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Released 07 Oct 2008
The Department for Business today laid an Order in Parliament to enable
Ministers to intervene and make decisions on mergers that may impact on the
UK's financial stability.
The Government announced it would be seeking Parliamentary approval for
this change on 18 September, at the same time as it issued an intervention
notice in relation to the proposed merger of Lloyds TSB Group plc with HBOS
Minister for Economic Competitiveness and Small Business, Shriti Vadera,
"The Government took swift action in relation to the proposed merger of
Lloyds and HBOS to support the UK financial system.
"In the present economic climate it is vital that financial stability can
be considered alongside competition questions."
The Order must now be passed by both Houses of Parliament.
1. Section 42 of the Enterprise Act gives the Secretary of State the
power to issue an intervention notice to the Office of Fair Trading where he
suspects that a merger or a proposed merger may raise issues that relate to
a public interest consideration that has been specified under Section 58 of
2. Section 58 of the Enterprise Act currently specifies two
considerations as being matters of public interest namely, national security
and plurality of media ownership. Section 58 also provides for the Secretary
of State to specify new public interest considerations by Order.
3. The Office of Fair Trading issued an Invitation for Comments on the 18
September inviting submissions on the proposed Lloyds TSB - HBOS merger. The
OFT must deliver its report to the Secretary of State by the 24 October
4. BERR will publish a supporting document on its website today that sets
out the reasons for the issuing of the Intervention Notice.
5. The Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform helps UK
business succeed in an increasingly competitive world. It promotes business
growth and a strong enterprise economy, leads the better regulation agenda
and champions free and fair markets. It is the shareholder in a number of
Government-owned assets and it works to secure, clean and competitively
priced energy supplies.
About the Author
© Crown Copyright. Material taken from the BERR- Department
for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform replacing DTI - Department for
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2008-10-07 15:27:29 in Business Articles