Roundup-NTMA returns to markets
04 July 2012
Roundup-NTMA returns to markets
Troubled Irish property developer Treasury Holdings and its owners Richard Barrett and Johnny Ronan face further financial demands from lenders and the National Asset Management Agency, the Commercial Court heard yesterday.
KBC Bank Ireland served notice on June 29th that it would seek an order to wind up Treasury unless E20 million is paid within 21 days under a guarantee of loans to various Treasury companies. KBC is owed E75 million by Treasury.
In addition, Nama has issued repayment demands to Mr Barrett and Mr Ronan for E3 million each arising from guarantees of a E13.5 million loan to Treasury.
These details emerged on the first day of a hearing into Treasury's bid to overturn Nama's decision to call in about E1 billion in loans in January of this year.
There was potentially some good news for taxpayers with Michael Cush SC, for Treasury, informing the judge that the case was likely to take just one week to conclude rather than the two that had been pencilled into the diary, which should save on legal fees.
This drew a raised eyebrow from Ms Justice Mary Finlay Geoghegan. "The scepticism," was Mr Cush's light-hearted response, which elicited chuckling in court.
"No, no," was the judge's reply accompanied by a wry smile.
With the benches flanked by mountains of boxes containing case documents, Mr Cush began a near five-hour walk-through of Treasury's application. He highlighted the key issues. The first was whether the decisions of the Nama board on December 8th, 2011 to move to enforcement, and of January 25th to move on the loans, were in the area of public law and amenable to judicial review. The second is whether the decision taken on December 8th was in breach of Nama's duty to notify Treasury and to give it the opportunity to be heard. The court is also being asked to determine whether Nama failed to exercise its discretionary powers in a "fair and reasonable manner". The Irish Times
S technology firm Xilinx has announced 60 new jobs for Ireland as part of a $50 million (E39 million) expansion of its electronics engineering operations in Dublin and Cork.
The semiconductor firm designs microchips for the electronics and communications industries. It is a leading provider of programmable logic devices with a market share of nearly 50 per cent.
The jobs will be in the areas of engineering, product development and research, according to Kevin Cooney, managing director of Xilinx in Europe.
The company is to take on 45 engineering staff at its European headquarters in Dublin and its engineering centre in Cork. A further 15 people will also be hired across a broad range of disciplines.
Mr Cooney said the bulk of the 60 new jobs would be created within the next two years, with the $50 million investment taking place over a five-year period.
Welcoming the announcement, IDA Ireland chief executive Barry O'Leary said: "This strategic and multimillion RD investment from Xilinx strengthens Ireland's position as a leading location for cutting-edge research in the technology space."
He added: "This highly significant investment from a global leading ICT company is a further endorsement of Ireland's continuing success in attracting FDI."
Minister for Jobs Richard Bruton said the investment and announcement of new jobs was "a great boost of confidence" for Ireland and "what the economy needs".
Xilinx currently employs more than 250 people at its European headquarters in Citywest in Dublin, where it operates a research, development, engineering and IT centre. It employs a further 20 people at its operations in Belfast and six people in Cork.
The company had revenue of $2.2 billion in the last fiscal year, with 27 per cent of corporate revenue coming from Dublin. The Irish unit of the company has paid dividends exceeding $1.8 billion (E1.4 billion) to its parent in the past decade. The Irish Times
Irish people pay the third highest amount for their leader per head within the EU, Bloomberg said yesterday.
We pay about 4.3 cents each every year to cover Enda Kenny's E200,000 salary.
Cyprus, which took over the rotating European Union presidency earlier this week after seeking a bailout, has the costliest head of government in the 17-nation euro area. Luxembourg is second, where pay generally is high.
Cyprus's 804,435 residents will each pay almost 20 cents this year toward the E158,551 annual salary of President Demetris Christofias, who last month became the fifth euro leader to request a financial lifeline. Jean-Claude Juncker's E210,111 pay costs each inhabitant of Luxembourg about 41 cents.
"Luxembourg isn't odd because everybody is highly paid, but there's no reason why the Cypriot president should be that well paid," said Eoin O'Malley, a professor of political science at Dublin City University.
"I assume in the next 12 months the president's salary will fall significantly."
Mr Kenny cut his salary to E200,000 last year from E214,187 in an attempt to show solidarity with others who have endured salary cuts.
That still left him better paid than leaders from solvent countries such as the Netherlands (E180,000); the UK (E172,000); Finland (E129,000); and Poland (E33,367).
Euro-area finance ministers approved Cyprus's bailout request on June 27 without specifying an amount for the rescue, which will encompass the public sector as well as banks. Cyprus is also seeking assistance from the International Monetary Fund.
Demands for austerity have forced the politicians and heads of state of the other four countries forced to ask for bailouts, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Ireland, to take pay cuts. The Irish Independent
THE National Treasury Management Agency will make a well flagged return to the bond markets tomorrow, the first time the country has borrowed any money from private investors in almost two years.
Tomorrow's sale will be the first stage in a "phased re-entry" to the markets, NTMA boss John Corrigan said yesterday. Officials from his agency have been criss-crossing Europe in recent days to prepare the way for the sale and ensure that it does not flop.
The European Commission described the sale as a sign of the "increasing confidence" in Ireland's "strong record" of implementing its aid programme.
"I wouldn't call it a big deal in itself," said Eoin Callan, a senior bond dealer at Dankse Bank in Dublin. "But it does mark a noteworthy step in the right direction."
The NTMA will borrow E500m and then repay it in October as it gingerly tests the markets. The sale of so-called treasury bills is a step in the Troika's plans for an orderly return to the markets next year, when the State will have to borrow money for much longer periods.
ther bailout countries, such as Portugal and Greece, never stopped selling treasury bills, but the NTMA abruptly halted all sales as Irish yields soared in the autumn of 2010.
Scandinavian pension funds have shown significant interest in the sale and most of the buyers are likely to be foreign, Danske's Callan said yesterday. The Irish Independent
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