I propose to take Questions Nos. 69 and 70 together.
Where requested by Government, NewERA (a business unit in the NTMA) is carrying out advisory and oversight roles in relation to the possible restructuring or disposal of commercial State company assets. NewERA’s role in these disposal processes is to assist and advise the relevant Government Departments in representing the Government’s financial interests in the context of asset disposals and to ensure that Government-agreed timelines and financial objectives are clearly communicated to the relevant parties. It is also the responsibility of NewERA to ensure that the Government Steering Group overseeing the transactions is kept fully informed of progress and developments with the goal of ensuring that the financial objectives of the process are achieved.
In order to assist NewERA in its role the NTMA (acting through its NewERA unit) have currently engaged three external consultants who are providing advice in respect of various technical aspects of the proposed disposals of State assets. The NTMA (acting through its NewERA unit) incurred €43,050 in respect of external advice procured in 2012.
In relation to the sale of Irish Life, Goldman Sachs were appointed as advisors in 2011. Fees payable to Goldman Sachs for services provided (from appointment in 2011 – 2013) are being finalised. Legal advice in respect of the purchase and sale of Irish Life was provided by Matheson. An interim payment of €108,613.97 (not including VAT) was paid in January 2013. Once again fees payable to Matheson in respect of legal services are still being finalised.