Postal Services Bill - continued        House of Lords

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  PART IV
  REORGANISATION OF THE POST OFFICE
 
Transfer of property etc.
Transfer of property etc. to nominated company.     62. - (1) On such day as the Secretary of State may by order appoint, all the property, rights and liabilities to which the Post Office was entitled or subject immediately before that day shall become by virtue of this section property, rights and liabilities of a company nominated for the purposes of this section by order of the Secretary of State.
 
      (2) The Secretary of State may nominate for the purposes of this section any company formed and registered under the Companies Act 1985, subject to subsections (3) and (4).
 
      (3) The Secretary of State shall consult the Post Office before nominating a company for the purposes of this section.
 
      (4) On the appointed day the company concerned must be a company limited by shares which is wholly owned by the Crown.
 
      (5) An order made under this section may be varied or revoked by a subsequent order at any time before any property, rights or liabilities of the Post Office vest in a company by virtue of this section.
 
      (6) Schedule 3 (which makes supplementary provision) shall have effect.
 
      (7) For the purposes of this Part a company shall be treated as wholly owned by the Crown at any time when each of the issued shares of the company is held by, or by a nominee of, the Treasury or the Secretary of State.
 
      (8) In this Part-
 
 
    "the appointed day" means the day appointed under this section, and
 
    "the Post Office company" means the company nominated for the purposes of this section.
 
The Post Office company etc: government holdings
Government holding in the Post Office company and certain subsidiaries.     63. - (1) The Post Office company or any of its wholly owned subsidiaries shall issue such securities of the company or subsidiary concerned as the Secretary of State may direct.
 
      (2) Subject to subsections (3) and (4), any such securities shall, as the Secretary of State may direct, be issued to the Treasury or the Secretary of State.
 
      (3) If the Secretary of State gives a direction under subsection (1) for the purpose of requiring an issue of shares or share rights for which prior approval has been given in accordance with section 67, the shares or share rights concerned shall be issued to the person approved for that purpose in accordance with that section.
 
      (4) If the Secretary of State gives a direction under subsection (1) for the purpose of requiring a relevant subsidiary to issue shares or share rights in it to the Post Office company or to another relevant subsidiary of which it is a subsidiary, the shares or share rights concerned shall be issued to the Post Office company or (as the case may be) to the other relevant subsidiary.
 
      (5) The Secretary of State shall not give a direction under this section without the consent of the Treasury or at a time when the Post Office company is not wholly owned by the Crown.
 
      (6) Securities to be issued in pursuance of this section shall be issued at such time or times, and (subject to subsection (7)) on such terms, as the Secretary of State may direct.
 
      (7) Any shares issued in pursuance of this section-
 
 
    (a) shall be of such nominal value as the Secretary of State may direct, and
 
    (b) shall be issued as fully paid and treated for the purposes of the Companies Act 1985 or the Companies (Northern Ireland) Order 1986 as if they had been paid up by virtue of payment of their nominal value in cash.
      (8) In this Part "relevant subsidiary" means any subsidiary of the Post Office company which-
 
 
    (a) delivers relevant postal packets in the United Kingdom,
 
    (b) collects relevant postal packets from access points in the United Kingdom,
 
    (c) sorts or transports relevant postal packets in the United Kingdom, or
 
    (d) provides a registered post service in the United Kingdom,
 
    and any other subsidiary of the Post Office company which holds shares or share rights in, or is connected to, any such subsidiary.
      (9) For the purposes of subsection (8), a subsidiary of the Post Office company is connected to another such subsidiary which falls within any of paragraphs (a) to (d) of that subsection ("the operating subsidiary") if it forms part of a chain of subsidiaries of the Post Office company which leads to the operating subsidiary and which is identified by the fact that each member of the chain holds shares or share rights in the next subsidiary in the chain.
 
      (10) In subsection (8) "access point" and "relevant postal packets" have the same meaning as in section 4.
 
Government investment in securities of the Post Office company and its subsidiaries.     64. - (1) The Treasury or, with the consent of the Treasury, the Secretary of State may at any time acquire securities of the Post Office company or of any of its subsidiaries.
 
      (2) The Secretary of State shall not, without the consent of the Treasury, dispose of any securities acquired by him in pursuance of this section.
 
      (3) Subsection (2) does not apply to any disposal which is excepted from subsection (1) or (2) of section 66 by virtue of subsection (3) or (5) of that section.
 
 
The Post Office company etc: restrictions on dealings
Restriction on issue of shares to third parties.     65. - (1) No shares or share rights in the Post Office company shall be issued on or after the appointed day unless-
 
 
    (a) they are issued to the Treasury, the Secretary of State or any nominee of either of them, or
 
    (b) the issue is one for which prior approval has been given in accordance with section 67.
      (2) No shares or share rights in any relevant subsidiary of the Post Office company shall be issued on or after the appointed day unless-
 
 
    (a) they are issued to the Treasury, the Secretary of State or any nominee of either of them,
 
    (b) they are issued to the Post Office company or any other relevant subsidiary of which the relevant subsidiary concerned is a subsidiary or any nominee of the Post Office company or of the other relevant subsidiary, or
 
    (c) the issue is one for which prior approval has been given in accordance with section 67.
Restriction on disposals of shares to third parties.     66. - (1) Neither the Treasury nor the Secretary of State nor any nominee of either of them shall, on or after the appointed day, dispose of any of the issued shares or any share rights in the Post Office company or any relevant subsidiary which are held by him.
 
      (2) Neither the Post Office company nor any subsidiary of that company nor any nominee of the company or subsidiary shall, on or after the appointed day, dispose of any of the issued shares or any share rights in a relevant subsidiary which are held by the company, subsidiary or nominee concerned.
 
      (3) Subsection (1) does not apply in relation to any disposal by the Treasury, the Secretary of State or a nominee of either of them to any other person falling within this subsection.
 
      (4) Subsection (2) does not apply in relation to any disposal by the Post Office company, any subsidiary of that company or any nominee of the company or subsidiary to any other person falling within this subsection.
 
      (5) Subsections (1) and (2) do not apply in relation to any disposal for which prior approval has been given in accordance with section 67.
 
Approved disposals.     67. - (1) Prior approval is given in accordance with this section if the proposed issue or disposal is approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament passed on a motion moved by or on behalf of the Secretary of State.
 
      (2) The motion shall, in particular, specify-
 
 
    (a) the size and nature of the proposed issue or disposal,
 
    (b) the person to whom the proposed issue or disposal is to be made, and
 
    (c) the purpose of the proposed issue or disposal.
      (3) No such motion shall be moved by or on behalf of the Secretary of State in relation to a proposed issue or disposal of shares or share rights in the Post Office company unless-
 
 
    (a) the Post Office company has agreed to be a party to a joint venture, or another arrangement for working together with another person, which the Post Office company considers to be in its commercial interests,
 
    (b) the arrangement includes the proposed issue or disposal,
 
    (c) the Post Office company has recommended to the Secretary of State that the proposed issue or disposal take place,
 
    (d) the Secretary of State is satisfied that the proposed issue or disposal is for the purpose of securing the arrangement in question and that the arrangement is in the commercial interests of the Post Office company, and
 
    (e) the Treasury have given their consent to the proposed issue or disposal.
      (4) No such motion shall be moved by or on behalf of the Secretary of State in relation to a proposed issue or disposal of shares or share rights in a relevant subsidiary unless-
 
 
    (a) the Post Office company or the relevant subsidiary has agreed to be a party to a joint venture, or another arrangement for working together with another person, which the Post Office company considers to be in the commercial interests of the Post Office company,
 
    (b) the arrangement includes the proposed issue or disposal,
 
    (c) the Post Office company has recommended to the Secretary of State that the proposed issue or disposal take place,
 
    (d) the Secretary of State is satisfied that the proposed issue or disposal is for the purposes of securing the arrangement in question and that the arrangement is in the commercial interests of the Post Office company, and
 
    (e) the Treasury have given their consent to the proposed issue or disposal.
 
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Prepared 16 June 2000