herald

Wednesday 13 December 2017

debts

Noonan in talks over notes

FINANCE Minister Michael Noonan (above) plans to "commence conversations" with European colleagues next week on restructuring promissory notes used to bail out the former Anglo Irish Bank.

Repayments cost taxpayers around €3.1bn a year.

Mr Noonan said he presumed "all hands are on deck dealing with Spain and Greece" at the meeting in Luxembourg but added that the Government will table a 'technical paper' on promissory notes as a policy paper once it is completed.

Experts from the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF have been meeting in Brussels at Noonan's request to discuss possible solutions to the problem.

Any changes on the promissory notes will require agreement from all 27 EU member states, Noonan said.

The minister said there is "significant support" among some European nations to fund the banks directly from the ESM so the debts do not appear on sovereign balance sheets.

But support for the move is far less in triple-A rated countries like Germany, he conceded.

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