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Internal Affairs Minister Richard Worth has blamed news media "misreporting" for him again being ticked off by Prime Minister John Key.

Mr Key reprimanded Dr Worth after the minister went to India on a private visit and promoted an aviation company in which he held shares and a directorship.

The company has a joint venture arrangement with an Invercargill-based academy which wants to train Indian pilots.

Dr Worth was carpeted for breaking the rules about potential conflict of interest, and Labour demanded his resignation.

Mr Key resisted that, but since then it has been reported that a company Dr Worth held shares in had links with WSBC, a company which was investigated by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).

Dr Worth said today the SFO had taken material from WSD on December 9, but it was not an investigation as such.

"I was also told that none of these issues touched WSD and there was no cause for concern that there would be any impact on WSD," he told Radio New Zealand.

"My concern was that I needed to be involved in a company that was operating wholly within the law...and I was satisfied on that."

He had sought a ruling from the Cabinet Office over his involvement, but stood down as a director in January "of my own volition" before getting a reply.

His shares went into a family trust, which has now disposed of them.

Dr Worth said he had not told Mr Key about the SFO "visit" as it didn't relate to the company's activities, and he had been told there was no cause for concern.

WSD was properly run and while it might seem otherwise "I can't really be held accountable for misreporting that produces perception".

He said he had been reminded by the Prime Minister of his expectations of his ministers and "I accept that".

Labour MP Pete Hodgson raised the issue in Parliament last Thursday when he asked Dr Worth about shareholdings in the Indian financial services company WSD Global Markets Ltd.

WSD Global board chairman and former MP Matt Robson told NZPA the case against the company to which Mr Hodgson was referring had been dropped.

That company - WSBC - had a common shareholder with WSD Global.

Mr Robson said WSBC was initially accused of "lax regulatory activities" but was later given a clean bill of health in an independent report.

Mr Key said yesterday he had spoken to Dr Worth on Saturday.

Questioned about the SFO inquiry, Mr Key told reporters: "There's some need for caution around that before jumping to conclusions."

Asked whether he still had confidence in Dr Worth, Mr Key said he did.

"If I didn't I wouldn't retain him."

- NZPA