Wednesday 13 December 2017

Noonan to monitor mortgage arrears

Finance Minister Michael Noonan
Finance Minister Michael Noonan
Fionnan Sheahan

Fionnan Sheahan

FINANCE Minister Michael Noonan said the Government will bring in further measures to tackle the mortgage crisis, if needed.

But Mr Noonan said he believed the "appropriate suite of resolution options" is already available.

Speaking in the Dail last night, the minister said: "This is the primary target and responsibility on which the Government has to deliver this year.

"The banks know that, the Department of Finance knows that, and the Central Bank knows that.

"Whether additional measures will be required is, obviously, an issue that we will keep under review."

"However, we need to get to a point at which individual mortgage arrears cases are moved on and addressed. The appropriate suite of resolution options is now available."

Fianna Fail finance spokesman Michael McGrath said his party wants changes to the Government's approach to tackling the escalating mortgage arrears crisis.

Among the measures called for by the party were:

* A clear definition of a 'sustainable solution' under the Mortgage Arrears Resolution Targets programme.

* Independent investigation into the issue of 'strategic default'.

* The establishment of an independent mortgage resolution office.

* Steps to ensure that the cost of engaging a personal insolvency practitioner is not a barrier to a person availing of the new service.

But Mr Noonan said the Government inherited a "severe mortgage crisis from the previous Fianna Fail government".

"Like the economic, fiscal and jobs crisis that we inherited, this Government have resolved to tackle the issue head on," he said.

Irish Independent

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