Have you wondered why the government seems so reluctant to control energy prices which are crippling the ordinary citizen, or why the government bails-out loss-making banks and never seems too keen on proper regulation the finance industry?
Perhaps part of the answer lies in the fact that 32% of government ministers have either been directly financially involved in these industries, or have accepted donations and other ‘gifts’ from those industries.
According to a recent report by the World Development Movement, ministers embroiled in the money web include David Cameron, William Hague, Michael Grove, Oliver Letwin, and Vince Cable. The list of ministers makes interesting reading, especially when we start to get an idea of how deeply involved those who are supposed to represent us are with companies who have a vested interest in making as much money as possible out of the person in the street.
Using publically available information, the research conducted by WDM has revealed the interests of the following ministers, although the involvement of government ministers with finance and energy companies may go much deeper than this information suggests.
Here is the full list of members of the government involved in either finance or fossil fuel energy. Of the 125 members of the government, 40 (32 per cent) have links to either or both of these sectors:
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon – Senior positions at NatWest, Alliance Bernstein, and Sucden Financia (1991 – present)
Gregory Barker – Anglo Siberian Oil (1998–2000) Head of International Investor Relations for Sibneft (1998) 50 Shareholder in New Star European Growth Fund PLC and Henderson High Income Trust PLC. Corporate Finance Director of the Australian owned International Pacific Securities
Vincent Cable – Chief economist and other positions at Shell International (1990-1997).
David Cameron – Accepted £10,000 from Jonathan Green of hedge fund GLG Partners, Accepted £10,000 from Mark Foster Brown of hedge fund Altima Partners54 (2005)
Kenneth Clarke – Director of Foreign and Colonial Investment Trust plc (until 2007)
Nick Clegg – Accepted £9,000 from Neil Sherlock, head of public affairs at auditors KPMG (2006 -2008)
Lord Deighton – Chief Operating Officer for Europe and other positions at Goldman Sachs. (1983 – 2005)
Alan Duncan – Oil trader and other positions at Shell (1979-1992)58 Consultant for Vitol.
Philip Dunne – SG Warburg (1981-88) Former Managing Director of Lufkin & Jenrette a US investment bank.
Michael Fallon – Director of Tullett Prebon Plc (independent non-executive); inter-dealer broking (until 2012)
Lord Freud – Vice-chairman and other senior positions at S G Warburg (later known as UBS Investment Bank) (1984-2003)
Robert Goodwill –Shareholding in Barclays, Gazprom and Lukoil 63 Accepted £11,000 donation from Mountboon Investments Ltd financiers (2010)
Dominic Grieve – Total shareholdings of more than £240,000 in Anglo American, Standard Chartered, Rio Tinto and Shell.
Michael Gove – Accepted £10,000 donation from Aidan Heavey, founder and chief executive of global gas and oil company Tullow Oil.(2010)
Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint – Chairman and other senior positions HSBC (1992 – 2010)
William Hague – Worked for Shell UK (1982-83).68 Accepted over £25,000 in non-cash donations from CQS
Philip Hammond – Director of Consort Resources Ltd later purchased by Caledonia Oil and Gas (1999-2003)
Stephen Hammond – Director Commerzbank Securities (2000–Present) 71 Has shareholdings in Peal Gas Ltd.
Greg Hands – Worked or three different firms in an eight year banking career.(1990 – 1997)
Matthew Hancock MP – Payment of £3,000 from UBS AG for speech (2011)
Earl Howe – London director of Adam & Co. plc (1987 -1999
Mark Hoban – Payment of £1,300 from JP Morgan Chase for speech (2010)
Nick Hurd – Represented a British bank in Brazil (1995-1999).
Sajid Javid – Directorships and other senior positions at Deutsche Bank AG, (2000-2009), JP Morgan Partners LLC (1997-2009) and Chase Manhattan Bank (1991-1994).
Jo Johnson – Investment banker at Deutsche Bank ( Until 1997)
David Lidington – Worked for BP (1983-86) and Rio Tinto (1986-87)
Oliver Letwin – Directorships and other senior positions at Investment bank NM Rothschild (1986-2009)
Mark Lancaster – Management consultant at Palmer Capital a privately owned venture capital and fund management business. (resigned 2012)
David Laws – Vice President JP Morgan’s Treasury Division (1987-1992) Managing Director Barclays De Zoete Wedd (1992 to 1994)
Maria Miller – Marketing manager Texaco (1990-1994)
Francis Maude – Member of Barclays’ Asia-Pacific Advisory Committee. (2005- 2009). The Conservative Party’s Implementation Team which reported to Maude also received significant donations in kind from accountancy firms KPMG, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Ernst and Young and Deloitte.
Theresa May– Shareholdings held by self and spouse in Prudential Corporation PLC.86 Accepted donation in kind from Michael Hintze who runs the hedge fund management firm CQS Asset Management. (2009)
David Mundell – Accepted £5,000 from Caledonia Investments PLC investment trust. (2010)
John Nash – Assistant Director Lazard Brothers and Co Ltd (1988 -1989)
George Osborne – Accepted donations and donations in kind from Michael Hintze of CQS hedge fund worth £38,700.90 Leading beneficiary of donations in kind to the then shadow cabinet from audit firms KPMG (£62,500) and Deloitte (£60,000) both of which have specialist oil and gas departments. (2009).
Desmond Swayne – Manager of Risk Management Systems at the Royal Bank of Scotland and other senior positions (1989 – 1997)
Elizabeth Truss – Commercial manager at Shell (1996 – end date unclear)
David Willets – Senior advisor to Punter Southall a leading actuaries and actuarial consultants.
Andrew Robathan – Worked for BP (1991- 92)
Hugh Robertson – Assistant Director and management head Schroder Investment Management (1995 – 2001)
Do you think that these ministers are able to represent you in a fair and open way, looking after your best interests, and the interests of others in your community?
Do you think that these ministers may have a vested interest in ensuring the companies who finance them, or with whom they have had (or have) close relationships with are ‘looked after’ through the ‘old-boys’ network?
If this information is publically available, it may only scratch the surface of much deeper involvement of members of the UK government who have vested interests in big business and the money machine.
A full copy of the report is available on the website of the World Development Movement