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Deal on Anglo debt restructuring ‘under study’ says ECB boss Mario Draghi


ECB president Mario Draghi. Photo: Getty Images

ECB president Mario Draghi. Photo: Getty Images

ECB president Mario Draghi. Photo: Getty Images

EUROPEAN Central Bank boss Mario Draghi said a deal on the restructuring of billions of debt in Anglo Irish Bank is "under study."

Mr Draghi also said he was confident of a yes vote on the fiscal compact referendum although he conceded that there are "fragilities that need to be taken care of".

He would not be drawn on what level the discussions on the estimated €17bn in interest on over €30bn in Anglo promissory notes, or IOUs, that could be renegotiated and said the issue was not raised at today’s ECB meeting where its key interest rate was kept at 1pc.

It is also understood that the €3.1bn that is due to be paid to Anglo bondholders at the end of the month may be subject to restructuring which could mean a later payment time.

The overall discussion on the Anglo, now IBRC, debt centres around a reduction in the €17bn in interest payments and agreeing a longer time to pay it back.

Mr Draghi added that of all countries in bailout programmes, Ireland had made the most progress under harsh circumstances.

Earlier today the ECB kept its key interest rate at 1pc, as expected.

However, there may be scope for cuts later in the year.

The UK treasury also decided not to reduce rates further.

Explaining the board’s decision, Mr Draghi said inflation is now likely to stay above 2pc in 2012, mainly due to increases in energy prices.

He also said the ECB expects the euro area to record Gross Domestic Product growth of between -0.5pc and 0.3pc in 2012 and between zero and 2.2pc in 2013 with the outlook remaining subject to downside risks.

“They notably relate to a renewed intensification of tensions in euro area debt markets and their potential spillover to the euro area real economy,” he said.

“Downside risks also relate to further increases in commodity prices.”