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Friday, 5 February 2016

Lib Dems secure ‘Golden Share’ to guarantee future of Green Investment Bank

The Liberal Democrats say they have safeguarded ‘the heart’ of the Green Investment Bank (GIB) after, they claim, plans from the Tories put this at risk. The GIB’s green mission requires investment contributions to meet one of the five ‘green purposes’ as well as contributing to an overall greenhouse gas emissions reduction.

After heavy Liberal Democrat pressure, Conservative, Business Secretary Sajid Javid had confirmed, by tabling an amendment in the House of Lords by Robin Teverson. The amendment ensures that the ‘golden share’ will be held by a newly created independent Charitable company. This will protect its green role. This also means golden share can outvote all other shares in certain specified circumstances.

The Golden shareholder’s role would be to ensure that no changes could be implemented to its green investing initiatives without consent. Sajid Javid had confirmed plans to remove ministerial powers over GIB in October last year in what many considered a major step towards the bank's controversial privatisation. But thanks to amendments from the Liberal Democrats this has been stopped.

Liberal Democrat Business spokesperson Lorely Burt said: "Keeping green issues at the heart of the Bank’s remit is vital and something the Liberal Democrats fought hard to do. This announcement, slipped out, shows that our work and campaigning has paid off."

"This is a big win for the environment and the Liberal Democrats." Lorely Burt added.