United Nations officials have denied a report that the Secretary General, Kofi Annan, knew that a company employing his son was bidding for a contract in Iraq's oil for food programme during the Saddam Hussein era in the 1990s.

A review of Kojo Annan's involvement in securing the contract for the Swiss company Cotecna, and his father's role in the process, is currently being conducted by an independent commission.

Mr Annan Senior was cleared of any personal wrongdoing by the UN in March.

However, the New York Times newspaper said it had obtained a copy of a memo of a meeting in Paris in the late 1990s that suggests he may have met company officials.