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Thursday 18 July 2019

Scandal sees €10bn flood out of country


Up to €10 billion in funds is believed to have left Ireland in the last seven days as details of the Anglo Irish Bank scandal emerged.

According to financial sources, the significant movement of funds occurred ahead of the release of the Anglo-Irish Bank and the PricewaterhouseCoopers reports.

A spokesman for Finance Minister Brian Lenihan said the Minister was deeply concerned about the flow of money out of Ireland and it is time to put Ireland's reputation back on track.

"There is a lot of focus on Ireland right now, and people need to be responsible at the moment," said the spokesman, referring to media reports.

Labour's Finance spokesperson Joan Burton said yesterday that the events at Anglo and its impact on Ireland's banking reputation is bleeding the country of cash.

"Our reputation is mud, and we are being bled. Between the antics at Anglo and the failed Government strategy in dealing with the banks, huge damage is being done to this country."

It also has emerged that the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) report into Anglo Irish Bank, which was released in highly edited form late on Friday night, omitted large sections of the bank's Irish loan book, the bank's structure and failed to "discuss with management about the bank's profit and loss account".

PWC admitted it did not review "relevant financial and management information", and did not "check any underlying information, the adequacy of security or valuation reporting." The PWC team in their Anglo examination failed to have detailed discussions with management on the bank's profit and loss account, and did not discuss reasons for movements of funds.

In addition, the PWC report phase II failed to examine so-called smaller loans under €350m, leaving massive holes in the comprehensiveness of the report.

"We heard that the PWC was going to deep drill into Anglo. How can the Minister call that deep drilling, it barely scratched the surface. Mr Lenihan is playing a dangerous game" said Ms Burton.

The Department of Finance insisted yesterday that nationalisation only occurred after due diligence occurred and that he was not concerned about the omissions in the PWC report.

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