I move: "That the Bill be now read a Second Time." I thank the Deputies for their attendance at such short notice and at such a late hour.
As I have consistently informed the House, the Government has been in ongoing discussions with the European Central Bank to reach an agreed position on resolving the promissory note satisfactorily for all sides, namely, the Irish State, the European Central Bank and the eurozone. As many Deputies will have noted from this evening’s media commentary, the ECB is considering a proposal from the Government as part of these ongoing discussions. In the discussions with the ECB it was envisaged that the first step would be the liquidation of IBRC and the sale of its remaining assets to NAMA or other market purchasers.
As soon as the information relating to the proposal to liquidate IBRC was made public earlier today, there was an immediate risk to the bank. Given this position I, as Minister for Finance, took immediate action to secure the stability of the bank and its assets, valued at almost €14 billion, on behalf of the State. To this end, I vested the powers of the board temporarily in an employee of KPMG and a KPMG team is now in control of the bank on my behalf. The Government met earlier this evening and approved this proposed legislation for presentation to the Oireachtas.
Once the legislation is passed, joint special liquidators will be appointed to IBRC with immediate effect to wind up its business and operations. It is intended that the net debt owed by IBRC to the Central Bank and its associated floating charge security will be purchased by NAMA, using NAMA bonds, in a way that ensures there is no capital loss for the Central Bank.