Government control of the Manx ferry service is a demand of the Liberal Vannin faction in the new Manx government. Only people the government defines as Manx residents could buy shares, which would mean we couldn’t participate over here.
THE future ownership of the Isle of Man’s ferry service is set to hit the floors of the House of Keys and Tynwald in the near future, following an announcement today by a political party.
Liberal Vannin says the Manx government should prepare an action plan in the event of the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company being offered for sale in the future.
“As soon as possible, the ferry service should be owned by Manx residents,” the party said today.
LVP says that a contingency plan should include the following:-
We believe that this contingency plan should be:
• Government should form a new company with two classes of share capital. Class A would control the Articles of Association and Class B would be ordinary shares. The Articles of Association would state that only Manx residents could own shares in the company and there would be a maximum limit to the shareholding allowed. This class of shares would be retained by the Manx government.
• The assets of the Steam Packet would be purchased by government and put into this company.
• The ordinary shares would then be sold to Manx residents.
• If implemented, this plan would prevent the Steam Packet ever again being owned by an off-Island corporate structure whose main focus is the bottom line profit.
Party leader, Peter Karran MHK, said, “One issue that the world economic crisis has highlighted is that the Island’s new government of national unity needs policies that promote more self reliance if we are to protect the social improvements that have been achieved of the last 25 years.
“The present structures of the key components of off Island transport, energy and telecommunications need close investigation to maintain a diverse economy for the Island.
“The new administration has to own up to the total mess and the fiscal madness of the previous administrations’ policies such as the User Agreement with the Steam Packet and the MEA fiasco and be brave enough to take the necessary steps to rectify the situation for future generations.”
The Steam Packet is currently owned by a consortium of banks, the principal one being Banco de Spirito de Santo, a Portuguese bank.
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