Written Answers. - An Post.

410.

asked the Minister for Communications if he will give details of the financial commitment given to An Bord Post on its establishment as a semi-State body, including details of the amounts of money promised for the first five years; and if he will outline the way in which this commitment has been honoured to date.

The Postal and Telecommunications Services Act, 1983, made provision for the transfer to the new Company of all fixed assets (land, property, etc.) and of net current assets in exchange for shares. It also contained enabling provision to make available to An Post, subject to prior consultations between the Minister for Finance and the Minister for Communications, grants not exceeding £20 million for current expenditure during the company's first three years of operation and a sum not exceeding £50 million by means of Exchequer borrowing or equity or a combination of both, to finance capital works.

The assets are being transferred as set out in the legislation. A grant of £5 million was made to the company in 1984.

In view of the improved financial performance of the postal service in 1982 and 1983, and the difficult Exchequer position, the Government, in the context of the national plan, decided not to make any further grant assistance to An Post in 1985 or 1986 but to make £4 million equity capital available in 1985 and £3 million in 1986 as a contribution to the approved capital programmes of An Post in those years.