Gilmore tells party of critical phase in deal


Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore spoke privately of the Government’s problems securing a promissory note deal during a difficult phase of discussions with the ECB in a frank exchange with Labour TDs this week.

Yesterday Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Mr Gilmore publicly expressed confidence a deal would be done on the promissory notes before the next payment is due at the end of March.

However, Mr Gilmore is understood to have told his parliamentary party colleagues on Wednesday night that the matter had entered an urgent and critical phase which was currently proving problematic for Government.

He said it was untrue that the ECB had rejected Ireland’s preferred solution for handling the €30.6 billion promissory note used to stabilise Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide in 2010.

Fudging the issue

However, he stressed that agreement had not yet been reached with the due date for repayment imminent. He reiterated his view that failure to conclude a deal would have a profound impact on Ireland. Fudging the issue would be unacceptable, he insisted.

Mr Gilmore emphasised to Labour TDs and Senators that Fianna Fáil had agreed to the promissory note arrangement when that party was in power.

Speaking after the launch of a progress report on the Coalition’s Action Plan for Jobs yesterday morning, Mr Kenny said he thought he could speak for Mr Gilmore when he expressed confidence a deal would be struck soon.