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DUP Finance Minister does not grasp the full implications of NAMA

28 September, 2009 - by Jennifer McCann

Sinn Féin MLA and Chair of the Finance and Personnel Committee Jennifer McCann has stated that the DUP ‘s Finance Minister has not grasped fully the implications of the affect NAMA would have on the local economy if £5bn worth of assets currently held in the north were released onto the market under the Irish Governments proposals.

Speaking after today’s debate in the Assembly on NAMA MS McCann said:

“The failure of Sammy Wilson as the DUP’s finance minister to realise the actual impact that NAMA could have on economic recovery in the north is bewildering.

“The Irish government estimates that £5bn in assets are held within the north which the they are buying off the banks under NAMA.

“Currently there is no agreement on when the finances that will be spent acquiring these loans will be recouped.

“If this land were to come onto the local market in the next few years there would be significant deflation of current values, leaving many more people in negative equity and having a long term detrimental effect on overall economic recovery plans.

“Let’s get realistic here. Despite reassurance from Brian Lenihan to his counterpart Sammy Wilson, that is all they are - reassurances. If the southern economy takes a further downturn nothing precludes the Irish government dropping these assets on to the market in order to recoup what it has invested in NAMA.

“What we need to see is an all island economic summit to deal with NAMA and its effects island wide. Furthermore it should not be the situation that the two economies, north or south, are acting in isolation. We need to find common practices and close co-operation in future economic planning on an all Ireland basis.”

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