Royal Mail sell-off unveiled

Business Secretary Vince Cable is announcing the flotation of Royal Mail which will mean people will be able to buy shares in the company. Members of the Communication Workers Union overwhelmingly oppose the scheme.

Latest ITV News reports

Govt: Royal Mail needs 'commercial freedom' to thrive

The Royal Mail needs the "commercial freedom" of the private sector to thrive, the government argued today.

Ministers have insisted that universal, six-day-a-week deliveries are guaranteed but despite the share "giveaway" to workers, the unions are opposed to privatisation calling it an "utterly reckless gamble".

ITV News business editor Laura Kuenssberg reports:

Read: Privatisation - The latest twist in the Royal Mail's history

Read: Royal Mail sale - Tell Sid? Not quite

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'Enlightened self-interest' to change unions view

by - Former Business Editor

Business Secretary Vince Cable told me that "enlightened self-interest" will lead unions to come round on Royal Mail sell-off.

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced the flotation of Royal Mail. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

He said a six day service guaranteed everywhere but admitted that it is a "social purpose" not commercial - precisely the problem for a private Royal Mail.

Crucially, in the long term, Mr Cable said the universal service "might look different".

Read: Privatisation - The latest twist in the Royal Mail's history

Read: Royal Mail sale - Tell Sid? Not quite

Umunna outlines Labour opposition to Royal Mail sale

Chuka Umunna has outlined Labour opposition to the privatisation of Royal Mail.

Speaking in the Commons, he said: "Maintaining the Royal Mail in public ownership gives the tax payer an on-going direct interest in the maintenance of the universal postal service in this country.

Chuka Umunna outlines Labour opposition to the privatisation of Royal Mail. Credit: ITV News

"It helps safeguard the vital link the Royal Mail has with the Post Office and it ensures the tax-payer gets the share in the upside of modernisation and increased profits that Royal Mail delivers."

BCC: Royal Mail service must be maintained after sale

Royal Mail provides a vital service for businesses across the UK. This service must be maintained regardless of the company’s future ownership structure.

Many services currently delivered by the public sector can be delivered effectively and efficiently by private companies. In the case of Royal Mail, the key is to ensure that privatisation delivers value-for-money to the taxpayer, and maintains the universal service obligation that sustains both businesses and individuals alike.

– Dr Adam Marshall from the British Chambers of Commerce

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Royal Mail will 'still be UK's universal service' after sale

Business Secretary Vince Cable says there are "various myths" that need rebutting concerning the Royal Mail sell-off.

Business Secretary Vince Cable addresses the House of Commons.
Business Secretary Vince Cable addresses the House of Commons. Credit: ITV News

He told The Commons: "Contrary to what is being claimed, after a sale, Royal Mail will still be the UK's universal service provider. This includes services to urban and rural areas and free services to the blind."

Cable: Royal Mail sale goal is to secure universal service

Business Secretary Vince Cable.

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced Government's plans for the flotation of Royal Mail in the Commons.

He says the "overarching objective" of the plans is to "secure the universal postal service - the six-day-week service, uniform and affordable prices to all 29 million addresses in the UK, which is vital to the UK economy."

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