Gulf Keystone fires back at M&G over corporate governance row

Michael Bow
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GULF Keystone Petroleum (GKP), the Kurdistan-focused oil explorer, yesterday hit back at criticism from a key investor, labelling its complaints “disingenuous”.

The company, led by chief executive Todd Kozel, was publicly censured on Sunday by one of its biggest shareholders, the M&G Recovery Fund, over its corporate governance standards.

GKP yesterday listed a catalogue of complaints over the M&G criticism, which centres on who should be nominated to the company’s boardroom.

It expressed surprise M&G had nominated four potential independent directors for election and said its own man, the former head of the British Army Field Marshal Charles Guthrie, was leading the search instead.

It added claims by M&G it was seeking to meet new chairman Simon Murray were “wholly disingenuous”. GKP said its advisers had emailed M&G but had not received a reply. GKP has seen its share price side by nearly a quarter over the past year and in 2012 it posted a pre-tax loss of $81.4m.

GKP said this was not due to governance issues but short and medium term issues.