Saturday 20 January 2018

Kenny: Government not "throwing in the towel" in bank debt deal campaign

Taoiseach Enda Kenny
Taoiseach Enda Kenny

Michael Brennan, Deputy Political Editor

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has insisted that the Government is not "throwing in the towel" in its campaign to get a bank debt deal.

There have been doubts expressed about the ability to get the new Eurozone bailout fund to shoulder some of the €64bn cost of bailing out the banks after the state's exit from the bailout programme.

But Mr Kenny insisted that negotiations on getting the fund to take over some of the state's  stake in the bailout out banks would resume in the latter half of next year when full EU banking union was in place.

"We're not throwing in the towel," he said.

It came after Independent TD Joan Collins criticised the failure to get any bank debt deal, more than a year and a half after EU leaders pledged publicly to break the link between sovereign states and bank debt.

"I think you have thrown in the towel. I think you are playing footsie with the European Union and you need to start playing hardball," she said.

Ms Collins also announced that she was going to bring her challenge against the Anglo promissory note deal to the Supreme Court. The High Court dismissed her challenge last month.

Mr Kenny said that getting a bank debt deal would involve complex and lengthy negotiations.

"If you think you can go to a meeting of 27 EU leaders and say 'I want a cheque for €50bn, then you're very naive," he told Ms Collins

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