asked the Secretary of State for Trade whether he has granted any exemptions under Section 27(9) of the Companies Act 1976; and if he will make a statement.
The Secretary of State has granted one exemption under Section 27(9) of the Companies Act 1976 in favour of Bank of England Nominees Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Bank of England. Bank of England Nominees Ltd. have given a number of undertakings about the use to be made of the exemption. They will hold securities as nominee only on behalf of Heads of State and their immediate family, Governments, official bodies controlled or closely related to Governments, and international organisations formed by Governments or official bodies. They will in turn seek certain assurances from anyone in the eligible categories who wishes them to hold the securities as that person's nominee. These assurances are to cover (a) the fact that the person is the beneficial owner of the securities to be held by Bank of England Nominees Ltd.; (b) that the beneficial owner will not use his interest in any securities held by Bank of England Nominees Ltd. to influence the affairs of the company in which shares are held except as shareholders in general meetings of that company; (c) that the beneficial owner is aware of his overriding obligation, under Section 33 of the Companies Act 1967 as amended, to disclose his interest to the company in which shares are held if he is interested in 5 per cent. or more of that company's share capital.
Bank of England Nominees Ltd. has also undertaken to make a report annually to the Secretary of State for Trade of the identity of those for whom it holds securities, and, provided that it holds securities for two or more people, the total value of the securities held. The contents of such reports are to be confidential to the Secretary of State.