City banker to become minister

Click to follow

A top City banker has been recruited to the Government by Gordon Brown, it was revealed today.

Mervyn Davies, chairman of Standard Chartered, will become Minister of State in Lord Mandelson's Department of Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform.

He will be granted a peerage so that he can sit in the House of Lords, Downing Street said in a statement.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Mr Davies was personally courted by the Prime Minister for his banking expertise.

He is already a member of the Business Council for Britain, set up as an economic advisory body by Mr Brown in 2007.

The appointment comes as the Government continues to struggle to restore confidence to the banking sector.

Mr Davies, who was awarded a CBE in 2002 for services to the financial sector, is the latest of a series of non-politicians taken on as ministers by Mr Brown.

He appears set to fill a similar role to that of Lord Jones, the former head of the CBI who was recruited as Trade Minister in 2007. Lord Jones left the Government in the October reshuffle.

Mr Davies was involved in the Government's autumn bank bail-out and is thought to have been considered for chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland, now majority-owned by the Treasury.

He has been chairman of Standard Chartered since November 2006. He was previously the bank's chief executive for five years and has been on the board since 1997.