I understand why the Minister was otherwise detained when Second Stage of the Bill was taken. The Minister of State was not available either and the Minister of State with responsibility for European affairs and data protection, Deputy Dara Murphy, came to the House to discuss this very important Bill. I assume the Minister's officials have given him details of the comments made and some of the points I raised on behalf of my group on some of the concerns I have with the Bill and what is omitted. Will the Minister review this in his own time? The legislation needs to be kept under review.
My biggest concern is the owner of any loan, be it a residential mortgage or a business loan, is not covered under the legislation. To give a specific example, Goldman Sachs purchased small and medium enterprise loans and established Beltany, a special purpose vehicle, in Ireland to manage them, but the loans are being managed by Pepper Asset Servicing. I will not mention any companies, but stories have been printed in the media of specific examples whereby Goldman Sachs is trying to exert its influence and control over companies via performing loans. These loans are fully paid up and Goldman Sachs is trying to put in place its own consultants and is coming down very heavyhandedly. I have specific examples of this and I know that the Department has been made aware of them. I would have thought the Bill could have been used to address this.
What we have now is a watered-down version of the Bill as it was mooted and published, whereby the protection that should be given is not nearly as strong as it should be. I am particularly concerned about loans which have been sold on to companies such as Goldman Sachs operating through a special purpose vehicle in this country and managed by someone else. In such instances companies and mortgage holders are at the mercy of those international companies and they are not covered by the Bill. Will the Minister keep this matter under close review and if specific cases are brought to the attention of the Department will it give them the consideration required and not just state it cannot get involved in an individual commercial transaction? I fully understand this is the case, but the regulations in place should protect Irish companies and Irish mortgage holders who are doing everything they should under the original loan agreements but find these agreements altered by a company such as Goldman Sachs. If over the course of the coming months I continue to see this happen I will continue to raise it.
I raised many of my concerns on Second Stage and will not repeat them now. I would not be given the time to do so. I raised them with the Minister of State, Deputy Dara Murphy, and hope he has passed them on to the Minister. I genuinely ask the Minister to keep under review this type of situation where a company such as Goldman Sachs can establish a special purpose vehicle, have the loans administered by someone else and exert control over companies in full compliance with making payments on their loans. It is not acceptable. I ask the Minister to keep it under review and the Department to take seriously any complaint it receives.