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Last Updated: Thursday, 8 April, 2004, 13:45 GMT 14:45 UK
BG pays 1m for ex-chief's office
Former BG chairman Sir Richard Giordano
Sir Richard's office deal was agreed in 2003
The former chairman of BG Group is to get almost 1m from the firm to pay for an office in New York.

The UK gas firm confirmed it had given Sir Richard Giordano a one-off 970,000 payment - even though he left the company in December.

The payment also covers the cost of a full-time secretary and a chauffeur-driven car.

A spokesman for BG defended the payment saying it was part of his employment contract and had to be honoured.

The spokesman told the Press Association: "He decided, and the remuneration committee agreed, that he should be eligible for a private office, car and driver.

Under contract

"He comes from New York so he has decided to set up in New York and that is the cost of an office," said the spokesman.

The deal - which could spark renewed fury over so-called business "fat cats" - was agreed in 2003 when Sir Richard's annual pay was raised to 1.8m under his contract.

Under the agreement he will also receive 20,000-30,000 a year in future health insurance premiums.

When Sir Richard, 70, announced his retirement last July the company signalled it was under obligation to pay for his New York office - but details of the agreement emerged only in BG's annual report.

Sir Richard worked for British Gas and then exploration and production arm BG for 10 years.

He was chief executive of British Gas between May 1996 and February 1997 when it split into BG Group and Centrica.

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