72Reserves of the Post Office company and its subsidiaries
(1)The Secretary of State may, on or after the appointed day, give directions to the Post Office company—
(a)requiring it to allocate to a reserve generally, or to a reserve for a particular purpose, or to cause any of its subsidiaries so to allocate to a reserve, either a specified amount or such amount as the Post Office company considers appropriate,
(b)requiring it to re-allocate for a specified purpose, or to cause any of its subsidiaries so to re-allocate, the whole or any part of any amount previously allocated by the Post Office company or (as the case may be) subsidiary to a reserve for some other purpose, or
(c)with respect to the application by the Post Office company or any of its subsidiaries of amounts allocated to a reserve in accordance with a direction under this section.
(2)Directions requiring the allocation of any amount to a reserve may provide for it to be so allocated either at a specified time or during the course of a specified period.
(3)Directions under subsection (1)(c) may, in particular, require amounts allocated to a reserve in accordance with a direction under this section to be applied as if they were profits available for distribution within the meaning of section 263(1) of the [1985 c. 6.] Companies Act 1985 or Article 271(1) of the [S.I. 1986/1032 (N.I. 6).] Companies (Northern Ireland) Order 1986 (distributions to be made out of profits).
(4)Despite subsection (3), no part of a reserve to which amounts have been allocated in accordance with this section shall count as an undistributable reserve of the company concerned for the purposes of section 264(3)(d) of the Act of 1985 or Article 272(3)(d) of the Order of 1986 (restriction on distribution of assets).
(5)For the purpose of determining under section 264 of the Act of 1985 or Article 272 of the Order of 1986 whether the company concerned may make a distribution at any time, any amount for the time being standing to the credit of the reserve concerned (excluding any amount which by virtue of subsection (3) above is authorised to be, but has not yet been, applied as if it were profits available for distribution) shall be treated for the purposes of section 264(3)(c) of the Act of 1985 or Article 272(3)(c) of the Order of 1986 as if it were unrealised profits of the company.
(6)The Secretary of State shall consult the Post Office company before giving a direction under this section.
(7)No direction shall be given under this section without the consent of the Treasury.