April 5, 2010 3:00 am
Frank Chapman, chief executive of BG Group, made £28m in pay and other gains in 2009 after exercising a large tranche of share options.
Details of his pay, disclosed in the energy group's annual report, could provide more fuel for the politically charged debate about how much executives are paid.
Mr Chapman's basic salary in 2009 was £1.1m, up marginally from the previous year, but this was bolstered by a £1.6m bonus, a £4.6m increase in the transfer value of his pension and £5.3m in performance- related share awards.
These sums were dwarfed, however, by the £15.5m gain he made by exercising performancerelated share options that he had accrued over the course of a decade.
Details of the gains emerged just days after Richard Lambert, director-general of the CBI, told a business audience in London that chief executives risked being viewed as "aliens" residing in "a different universe to the rest of the community" if they continued to pick up exceptionally large pay packets.
Lord Mandelson, business secretary, also waded into the debate in a newspaper interview published on Saturday, when he called Bob Diamond, the highly-paid president of Barclays Capital, "the unacceptable face of banking".
BG said: "The large majority of renumeration is performance-driven and we have performed strongly against our peers. Our share price has risen 69 per cent in the last three years."
Shares in BG significantly outperformed the FTSE 100 in the five years ending December 31.
Last month the company announced a $40bn (£26bn) contract with CNOOC, the state-owned Chinese oil company, which will supply liquefied gas from eastern Australia for 20 years, as well as the buy-out of Australia's Pure Energy.
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