Adams tells government to stop Permanent TSB sale of 20,000 mortgages
Sinn Féin Louth TD, Gerry Adams, has called on the government, as the majority owner of Permanent TSB to instruct the Bank that “it must not sell-off 20,000 mortgages to vulture funds or unregulated loan owners”.
Deputy Adams said:
“Cleary there are families and households in Louth who face an uncertain future because of the threat by Permanent TSB to sell off their mortgages to vulture funds.
"Sinn Féin is proposing legislation that will regulate the vulture funds. So, also is Fianna Fáil.
"However, legislation and regulation are only one part of the equation for dealing with this matter. The government can and should, as the majority shareholder, instruct Permanent TSB not to sell its distress mortgages, and it should do so immediately.
"The government should also instruct banks in which it has a majority share, and which were saved at a huge cost to the Irish taxpayer, to look seriously at writing down some of the mortgage debt as a way of easing the crisis.
"If the government fails to take a stand on this issue, there is a real risk that other Banks will follow suit. All of this adds significantly to the crisis in housing that is faced by families across the state.
"Vulture funds are well named. Their only interest is in making a profit, and making it fast.
"They are not interested in negotiating with homeowners nor have they any interest in the social consequences of forcing families into homelessness.
"The government has been negligent in regulating vulture funds and has failed to act on advice from the Central Bank.
"In 2015 the Central Bank stated that its 'preferred policy approach was for the regulation of the actual loan owners' – that is the vulture funds.
"The government ignored this and chose instead to regulate the credit servicing companies that manage the loan for the vulture fund but not the vulture fund itself.
"While the Code of Conduct on Mortgage Arrears will still apply, the Central Bank wanted greater control over the owner of the loan. The government denied the Central Bank this ability.
"One reason for that may have been the very successful lobbying campaign that was carried out by the vulture funds who met officials from the Department of Finance over 60 times in a two-year period.”