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Volume 80: debated on Friday 14 June 1985

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement about his plans for the Britoil sale.

I am now able to give further details of the arrangement for this sale.Subject to market conditions, the offer for sale, which will be for a total of some 243 million shares, is intended to take place later during the summer. The offer price, which will be fixed and announced at that time, will be payable in two instalments, one on application and the second approximately three months later A "pathfinder' document, setting out most of the up-to-date information on the company, but not including the offer for sale price, will be published some weeks before impact day.Special arrangements will be made so that holders of the shares to be sold will receive the interim dividend for 1985 which will be declared by Britoil on publication of its interim results in mid-July. Existing shareholders will, subject to any legal restrictions overseas, be given certain preferential allocation entitlements to acquire the shares on offer. Any shareholder wishing to purchase shares in addition to those which he will be entitled to on a preferential basis will be able to do so by applying on a public application form.Fifteen million of the shares on offer will be available for preferential allocation to employees of Britoil, subject to a limit of 10,000 shares per employee.To encourage wider share ownership throughout the UK stockbroking firms across the country have been approached to act as regional co-ordinators for this offer for sale to encourage applications from private investors Allotment commissions will be payable to certain financial intermediaries in respect of successful applications submitted by them.