asked the Secretary of State for Trade if he has received an application from shareholders of Burmah Oil Limited for an investigation under Section 164 of the Companies Act in order to determine why the directors sold a substantial asset of their company at less than it was worth.
Is the Minister aware that according to the latest count the shareholders have lost about £117 million as a result of this sale? Will he tell the House whether the Government put any pressure upon the directors of Burmah Oil to the effect that they would receive the Bank of England guarantee only if they made the sale at low value? Will he say whether that is true?
I have no knowledge of any such pressure, but that is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Energy.