EU gives green light to winding down of Anglo and INBS
The European Commission has passed plans to liquidate state-owned Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide Building Society.
The banks, which have received €34.7bn in state aid, must be merged before the long-term liquidation process which also needs High Court approval.
Under state aid rules, the plans had to be approved by the Commission.
Competition commissioner Joaquin Almunia said the move will allow a focus on the future of the remaining Irish banks.
"I am satisfied that the distortions of competition caused by the enormous aid they have received is satisfactorily addressed by their exit from the market," he said. "Today's decision allows us and the Irish Government to focus on the future of the Irish banking system."