Belfast Telegraph

Royal Mail: Government to offload remaining stake in postal service

By Alan Jones

The Government has started the process of disposing of its remaining shareholding in the Royal Mail by way of a placing to institutional investors.

The Government currently holds just under a 14% stake in Royal Mail, with the remaining shares held by a combination of employees and private investors.

A Department for Business spokesperson said: "The Business Secretary has today authorised a sale process to begin. Current market conditions should allow a successful sale and the realisation of value for the taxpayer.

"The universal postal service is strongly protected by law and Ofcom has a duty to ensure its provision. Therefore the Government sees no policy reason to retain a stake in Royal Mail."

The Communication Workers Union said the move was a "disgrace".

General secretary Dave Ward said : "This fire sale nails the lie that the Tories stand up for the interests of ordinary people. By their actions today they have made it abundantly clear that they are only interested in privatisation dogma and making the rich richer - even when their actions place public services at risk.

"The remaining government share in this profitable company should have been used to safeguard the public's voice in Royal Mail and ensure the continuation of daily deliveries to every address in the country.

"The Tories have instead chosen an ideological course that puts the fundamental ethos of a centuries old national institution in jeopardy."

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