PRESS DIGEST-British Business - June 22

June 22 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the business pages of British newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

The Times Britain will on Monday tighten takeover rules to ensure that companies central to fighting the COVID-19 pandemic do not fall prey to foreign bidders. Centrica Plc has struck a deal to use a low-cost IT platform to run a digital-only "challenger" brand to try to win back customers who have deserted Britain's biggest energy supplier and moved to cheap start-ups.

The Guardian UK fund manager Aviva Investors has warned companies that executive pay packets should be the first casualty of any cost-cutting measures linked to COVID-19, but said hard-hit sectors such as airlines should not shy away from making necessary job cuts. UK employers have been told to take "urgent action" to support workers from ethnic minorities, after a survey found the number of black professionals in leadership roles has barely moved since 2014.

The Telegraph Energy suppliers in Britain have been given the green light to start collecting money owed by customers, the industry regulator Ofgem has said. The French state-owned utility EDF is exploring plans to help develop a new nuclear reactor in Cumbria and has met with local officials keen to revive the area's nuclear industry.

Sky News Boris Johnson will announce on Tuesday which sectors of England's economy can reopen from July 4, and he is expected to set out a reduction in the two-metre social distancing rule.

Compiled by Bengaluru newsroom