Sunday 17 December 2017

Setanta confusion

Law Society of Ireland president John Shaw has said that Setanta Insurance claimants and customers don't know what is happening a month after the Malta-registered insurer went into liquidation.

"Confusion over payment of these claims, which are likely to number over a thousand, has left many consumers worried," Mr Shaw said yesterday. He added that he had received legal advice that the Motor Insurers' Bureau of Ireland will be liable for any shortfall in money owed to claimants. The MIBI may seek reimbursement for payouts to policy holders who are now effectively uninsured.

£8.9BN RAIL DEAL INKED

Britain awarded an £8.9bn (€11bn) contract to run the expanded Thameslink rail network in London to an operator majority owned by Go-Ahead, ousting rival FirstGroup.

The new seven-year Thameslink contract is part of Britain's £6.5bn upgrade to improve services on major commuter routes across the capital. Govia, which is 65pc owned by Go-Ahead, beat four shortlisted bidders in the first competition for a rail franchise since 2012, when the UK government was forced to pull a contract after flaws were found in the way it handled bids. The Thameslink contract covers routes between London and towns in southern England including Brighton, Portsmouth and Cambridge, plus Gatwick and Luton airports.

CPA LENDING WARNING

The Institute of Certified Public Accountants gave a "guarded and cautious welcome" to the Government's announcement of the establishment of the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland and its mandate to provide funding of up over €500m for SME lending.

"Access to funding is a critical issue for SMEs and any measure to assist with this is of course welcome. But we need to ensure that the necessary safeguards are put in place to require the banks to actually lend the money to SMEs instead of just adding it to their own working capital," CPA President Cormac Fitzgerald told the CPA's annual conference.

M&B DIVIDEND HOPE

Mitchells & Butlers chief executive Alistair Darby said a pension agreement reached at the company removed a "material uncertainty" and it would now consider reinstating its dividend at the end of the year.

The company's food sales were stable while drinks were down just 0.3pc after three years of declines, he told Bloomberg.

Irish Independent

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