Littlechild opts for a quiet spell
Wednesday 05 June 1996
There are good reasons for this: Professor Littlechild does seem to have a habit of putting his foot in it. The electricity regulator chose the day after the Government flogged the last of its National Power and PowerGen shares to announce that he was tearing up his review of pricing controls for the electricity industry and starting again. The effect on the two companies' share prices was calamitous and investors rightly claimed that they had been hoodwinked. So this time the regulator has agreed he won't be saying anything.
The inclusion of this little nugget in the prospectus might seem more comic than anything else but there is a serious point in it. To get these bottom-of-the-barrel privatisation issues away, the Government has to ensure that they are completely bomb-proof from an investment point of view. If gagging the regulator is part of the price it is thought necessary to pay for a few extra coppers, so be it.
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