Kenny still confident of debt deal
Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said he is confident that a deal will be done on the promissory notes issue before the end of March.
Speaking in the Dáil this afternoon, Mr Kenny acknowledged there were “very significant challenges” involved in securing a concession for Ireland.
“The general focus of these discussions has been about the range of options regarding the promissory notes, the sources of funding, the duration of the notes, the interest rates applicable...and all of that area,” he added.
Mr Kenny told the Dáil the Government wanted to restructure and re-engineer the situation, to move from a very high interest rate overdraft to a long-term low interest mortgage. It was “within those parameters” that the Government wanted to get the very best deal possible for taxpayers.
He said he had been "clear and consistent" on the issue, he said. The Government and Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan had made it clear that it was not an easy situation to unravel.
“Clearly, the untangling of the deal done, which costs €3.1 billion a year until 2023 and lesser amounts beyond, amounts to almost €48 billion under the current arrangement,” he added.
If this were a simple action to untangle, it would have been done long ago, he said.
The Taoiseach was replying to Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin who said many media commentators, because of leaks, felt that a deal was clearly on the cards.
However, it had been revealed last Friday that the ECB had not accepted a Government proposal because it was contrary to EU treaty law, he said.