§ Mr. Steel
asked the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what representations he has received about BP Shipping company's decision to transfer 26 of its ships to the Bermudan flag; and if he will make a statement;
(2) if he will make representations to the BP Shipping Company Ltd. about the transfer of 26 of its vessels to the Bermudan flag; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Ridley
I have had letters from hon. Members and from the NUS and NUMAST expressing concern about the implications. Officials of my Department have had several exchanges with the company about its plans and about the legal position, and with NUMAST about the proposals in general. But the decision to transfer these vessels from the United Kingdom register is for the company, and I have no powers to prevent it.