Monday 24 April 2017

Junior Minister Brian Hayes confident of deal on Anglo debt

Michael Brennan, Deputy Political Editor

JUNIOR Minister Brian Hayes has said he is "confident" the European Central Bank will agree to a deal to make the Anglo Irish Bank debt more affordable.

It came after the Government dramatically brought legislation to liquidate Irish Bank Resolution Company (IBRC), formerly Anglo, through the Dail and Seanad. It is hoping to spread the payments for winding down Anglo over a longer period.

Mr Hayes said the European Central Bank had no fundamental disagreement with what the Government was doing. He was confident and optimistic of a deal.

"We want the right deal for the country. we were given a mandate. The right deal to make our debt more sustainable and help the country to get off its knees," he told RTE's Morning Ireland.

The European Central Bank will again discuss the proposed Anglo promissory note deal today at its headquarters in Frankfurt. The Government needs to get its agreement to replace the costly promissory notes - which requires annual repayments of €3.1bn - with a long-term Government bond with lower annual repayments.

Mr Hayes also said the re-hiring of the 800 former employees of IBRC was a matter for the liquidator. He believed many of them had skills that could be used - as NAMA moves in to take over its remaining loans.

"I would have thought quite a number of people will be offered positions because of their skills," he said.

Irish Bank Officials Association general secretary Larry Broderick said the way that the IBRC staff had been treated was horrendous. He said the Government wanted to be opportunistic by rehiring the staff who had lost their jobs at a cheaper cost.

"Staff are very shocked and disappointed," he said.

Sinn Fein finance spokesman Pearse Doherty said that the Government had wound up IBRC but had not reduced the €30bn Anglo debt. He said it was unlikely to have an impact on people's daily lives.


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