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Media: Newspapers

Volume 706: debated on Thursday 22 January 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are empowered to intervene in any purchase of a national daily newspaper by a sovereign wealth fund. [HL174]

The Enterprise Act 2002 provides the Secretary of State with a power to intervene in any merger, irrespective of the identity of the acquirer, if he considers that a public interest consideration specified under Section 58 of that Act is relevant. Among the public interest considerations currently specified are considerations relating to the need for accurate presentation of news and free expression of opinion in newspapers and to the need for a sufficient plurality of views in newspapers.