The Irish National Petroleum Corporation Limited (INPC) business and commercial assets were sold on 16 th July 2001. An undertaking by the purchaser, and its successors, to operate the facilities on a fully commercial basis for at least 15 years was a key element of the transaction. This undertaking is underpinned by a Deed of Guarantee. While the headline figure was $100 million (€117 million) for the 2001 transaction, it was always accepted that the net cash return arising from the transaction would be considerably less as, for example, the INPC had to use some of the proceeds to discharge the Company's significant debt (circa €88 million). After taking account of all the Company's matured liabilities it was estimated that the INPC would have funds of the order of €30 million.
The INPC has paid €20 million to the Exchequer (2002) but is not in a position to pay over remaining balances as, under Company Law, it must retain sufficient assets to meet potential liabilities. The INPC retains both rights and obligations under the terms of the Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) relating to the 2001 transaction.