Public Affairs: The Week in Lobbying

Populus has revealed that 68 per cent of Tory MPs and 75 per cent of Lib Dems have called for a lobbying register to include in-house public affairs teams, and more than 70 per cent from both parties supported the inclusion of trade bodies, trade unions, NGOs and charities. Populus surveyed 113 MPs during the four weeks from 27 February.

Omnicom Group has bought a majority stake in Portland as the group looks to strengthen its global lobbying muscle. The stake is thought to represent about 80 per cent of the public affairs and corporate comms agency founded 11 years ago by Tim Allan, a former senior adviser to Tony Blair and director of comms at BSkyB.

The Whitehouse Consultancy has been appointed by the UK Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance to undertake a public affairs and media campaign against proposals, announced in the Budget, to introduce VAT on sports nutrition drinks. Some drinks that had been zero-rated for VAT will be subject to 20 per cent tax from 1 October.

PLMR has been appointed by Arthritis Research UK to develop a public affairs campaign for 2012. The agency win comes after the appointment of Tracey Loftis, head of policy and public affairs, who joined Arthritis Research UK last year from Cancer Research UK.

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