Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has said he believes the banking inquiry "is progressing well" and the final report will be a "pretty good piece of work", though he declined to speculate on the timing of the publication of the report.
“You’ve got the wrong man,” he said in response to questions from reporters in Brussels on the banking inquiry. “I’m not in the banking inquiry, I’ve no access to it, I don’t know what’s in it. I don’t know what they’re recommending.”
Arriving to a meeting of euro zone finance ministers in Brussels, Mr Noonan said that he had listened to inquiry chairman Ciaran Lynch speaking on the issue this morning, and it seemed that the committee was "progressing well with the report."
“I am relying on what he said. But he said their time had been extended until the last week in January and that he was going to meet that deadline.”
Asked if the relevant legislation was fit for purpose, he said: "I thought they did quite well under the legislation they operate under. They had very extensive hearings. There's a major archive of opinion now which will inform people in the future as to what happened in Ireland at a particular time and they're working their way to an 11 chapter report with a chairman's preface to summarise the events and they're also making recommendations, so that looks to me like a pretty good piece of work."
Mr Noonan said he himself had served as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.
“Drafting reports is always difficult because you’re trying to get cross-party consensus to issues that are sometimes controversial.”
Euro zone finance ministers are due to be briefed by Mr Noonan on the fourth post-programme surveillance mission to Dublin which took place last month. The latest state-of-play regarding the third Greek bailout is also on the agenda.