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Written Answers - Bonds Markets

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 762 No. 1

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 79.  Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath  asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan  his views on the current prospects for Ireland to return to the bond markets; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19708/12]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan It has been stated repeatedly that the intention of the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) is to return to sovereign debt markets as soon as market conditions permit. In late January the Agency re-engaged with the bond market and extended the maturity of some €3.5 billion of debt which was due for repayment just after the end of the EU/IMF Programme. This is a significant first step in terms of managing Ireland’s post-Programme funding requirements. The steps necessary to position the NTMA for such a return include continued progress in the reduction of the budget deficit in line with the targets agreed in the EU/IMF Programme, together with the implementation of [172]policies that will see Ireland return to sustainable economic growth. Of course, resolution of the wider euro area sovereign debt and banking crisis is also a critical factor. The NTMA remains in regular contact with a broad range of market participants, and conditions permitting, is seeking to gradually extend its presence in the short-term debt market before seeking to raise longer-term debt. The NTMA will advise me when it feels that the time is right to re-enter the markets.

The Deputy should also be aware that the NTMA has reached agreement with the pensions industry on the structure of a new type of bond which will facilitate the creation of long term annuities based on the Irish Government bond yield curve. The NTMA stands ready to provide these bonds to the pensions industry as soon as the industry is in a position to invest in them.

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