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The Electricity (Northern Ireland) Order 1992

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Target investment limit for Government shareholding

76.—(1) As soon as the Department considers expedient and, in any case, not later than 6 months after any successor company ceases to be wholly owned by the Crown, the Department shall by order fix a target investment limit in relation to the shares for the time being held in that company by virtue of any provision of this Part by the Department, the Department of Finance and Personnel and their respective nominees (“the Government shareholding”).

(2) The target investment limit for the Government shareholding in a successor company shall be expressed as a proportion of the voting rights which are exercisable in all circumstances at general meetings of the company (“the ordinary voting rights”).

(3) The first target investment limit fixed under this Article for the Government shareholding in a particular company shall not exceed, by more than 0.5 per cent. of the ordinary voting rights, the proportion of those rights which is in fact carried by the Government shareholding in that company at the time when the order fixing the limit is made.

(4) The Department may by order fix a new target investment limit for the Government shareholding in a successor company in place of the one previously in force under this Article; but—

(a)any new limit must be lower than the one it replaces; and

(b)an order under this Article may, notwithstanding section 17(2) of the [1954 c. 33 (N.I.)] Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954, only be revoked by an order fixing a new limit.

(5) It shall be the duty of the Department and of the Department of Finance and Personnel so to exercise—

(a)their powers under Article 74 and any power to dispose of any shares held under any provision of this Part; and

(b)their power to give directions to their respective nominees,

as to secure in relation to each successor company that the Government shareholding in that company does not carry a proportion of the ordinary voting rights exceeding any target investment limit for the time being in force under this Article in relation to that company.

(6) Notwithstanding paragraph (5) but subject to paragraph (7), the Department or the Department of Finance and Personnel may take up, or direct any nominee of the Department or of the Department of Finance and Personnel to take up, any rights which are for the time being available to them, or to the nominee, either—

(a)as an existing holder of shares or other securities of a successor company; or

(b)by reason of the rescission of any contracts for the sale of such shares or securities.

(7) If, as a result of anything done under paragraph (6), the proportion of the ordinary voting rights carried by the Government shareholding in a successor company at any time exceeds the target investment limit for the time being in force under this Article in relation to that company, it shall be the duty of the Department or, as the case may be, the Department of Finance and Personnel to comply with paragraph (5) as soon after that time as is reasonably practicable.

(8) For the purposes of this Article the temporary suspension of any of the ordinary voting rights shall be disregarded.

(9) The Department shall not exercise any power conferred on it by this Article except with the consent of the Department of Finance and Personnel.

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