‘Privileged few’ have disproportionate access to top government figures, Greensill lobbying report finds

Complaints that a “privileged few” have disproportionate access to those at the top of government are “justified”, a report into lobbying by David Cameron on behalf of failed finance firm Greensill has found.

The report commissioned by Boris Johnson from lawyer Nigel Boardman found that financier Lex Greensill enjoyed “a privileged – and sometimes extraordinarily privileged – relationship with government”.

And Mr Boardman wrote: “Recent scrutiny of government’s processes for managing lobbying, especially in the context of the engagement between government and those acting on behalf of Greensill Capital, has focused on a number of issues with the current system.

“In particular, it has been argued that the government’s processes for managing lobbying are insufficiently transparent, that external organisations are able to exploit certain loopholes to land their messages more effectively, and that a privileged few have a disproportionate level of access to decision makers in government.

“I think some of these observations are justified.”

The 141-page report covers the circumstances under which Greensill Capital gained access to senior Whitehall officials and ministers and secured government contracts for its supply chain finance services, as well as Mr Cameron’s lobbying for assistance under coronavirus business support schemes.

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