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Written Answers — Department of Finance: Ireland Strategic Investment Fund Investments (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I am informed by the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (“ISIF”) that as at 31 December 2017 ISIF has a number of commitments in the area of residential and non-residential property. These commitments are outlined in tabular form below. I am also informed by ISIF that the Fund has committed a further €25 million to a real estate debt structure, the detail of which will...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Departmental Funding (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: Under the Ministerial and Parliamentary Offices Act, 1938, as amended most recently by the Oireachtas (Ministerial and Parliamentary Offices) (Amendment) Act, 2014, and the Electoral Act 1997 certain payments are made from the Central Fund to political parties. The payments are contingent on the request/approval of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in accordance with the...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Tracker Mortgage Examination (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: As the Deputy is aware, the Central Bank’s Tracker Mortgage Examination requires all mortgage lenders that provided tracker interest rate mortgages in the Irish market to conduct a complete review of their mortgage loan books to assess compliance with both contractual and regulatory requirements relating to tracker mortgages. Lenders’ reviews are required to be conducted...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Departmental Schemes (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: As announced in my Budget speech on 10 October 2017, it is my intention to establish Home Building Finance Ireland (HBFI) to increase the availability of debt funding on market terms to commercially viable residential development projects in the State. The purpose of HBFI is to address the concerns raised by many developers and other participants in the residential development market that...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Credit Availability (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I propose to take Questions Nos. 199 and 200 together. As the Deputy is aware, Government policy is focused on ensuring that all viable small and medium sized businesses have access to an appropriate supply of credit from a diverse range of bank and non-bank sources.  The Deputy will also be aware that, in my role as Minister for Finance, I have no direct function in the relationship...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Legislative Programme (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: As the Deputy will be aware, matching definitions for long-term financial service were used in both the Government legislation and the Sinn Féin legislation passed by the Oireachtas last year in relation to this Ombudsman. The Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act 2017 provides that ""long-term financial service" means—  (a) subject to paragraph (b), a...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Insurance Industry Regulation (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: As Minister for Finance, I am responsible for the development of the legal framework governing financial regulation.  I have no role in day to day supervision of the insurance industry, as this is the responsibility of the Central Bank of Ireland. Consequently, I submitted this question to the Central Bank of Ireland for its observations. It has informed me that all regulated...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Banking Sector Regulation (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I am advised by Revenue that Section 1049 of the Taxes Consolidation Act (TCA) 1997 sets out that a receiver appointed by a court in the State which has the direction and control of property is assessed and charged to income tax or corporation tax, as appropriate, on the property as if the property were not under the direction and control of the court. Such a receiver is answerable for doing...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Motor Insurance Costs (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: The Deputy should note at the outset that in my role as Minister for Finance I am responsible for the development of the legal framework governing financial regulation. Neither I nor the Central Bank can interfere in the provision or pricing of insurance products, as these matters are of a commercial nature, and are determined by insurance companies based on the risks they are willing to...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Banking Sector Regulation (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I propose to take Questions Nos. 205 and 206 together. Cryptocurrencies and their exchanges or platforms are currently not regulated and do not currently require an authorisation or licence from the Central Bank of Ireland.  On 12 December 2013 the EBA published a warning to consumers on virtual currencies, and on 4 July 2014 issued an opinion recommending that national supervisory...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Insurance Costs (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: As Minister for Finance, I am responsible for the development of the legal framework governing financial regulation.  Neither I nor the Central Bank of Ireland can interfere in the provision or pricing of insurance products, as these matters are of a commercial nature, and are determined by insurance companies based on an assessment of the risks they are willing to accept.  This...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: IBRC Liquidation (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I am advised by the Special Liquidators of IBRC that no refunds have been made or compensation issued by them in respect of payment protection insurance charged by the former building society referred to in your question. The Special Liquidators further advise that former customers may contact the Office of the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman to request that office to review and...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Departmental Expenditure (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: The Government disagrees profoundly with the Commission's analysis in the Apple State aid case and is challenging the Commission's decision before the European Courts. The Irish authorities engaged fully with the Commission throughout the State aid investigation. This involved a significant degree of legal and technical complexity, and additional expertise has been engaged where...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: State Aid Investigations (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: Notwithstanding the appeal in the Apple State Aid case and the difference in view between Ireland and the Commission on the issue, the Government is committed to complying with the binding legal obligations the Commission’s Final Decision places on Ireland. Apple therefore must be deprived of the benefit of the alleged aid and this involves two actions: - The calculation of the...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: VAT Rebates (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I am advised by Revenue that the VAT refund to the person concerned was paid into his bank account on 9 January 2018.

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Tax Code (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I am informed by Revenue that for inheritance tax purposes, the relationship between the person who provides the inheritance (i.e. the disponer) and the person who receives the inheritance (i.e. the beneficiary) determines the maximum amount known as the “Group threshold” below which inheritance tax does not arise. There are three separate Group thresholds based on the...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: House Sales (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: I assume from the question asked that the person in question is in arrears.  The Central Bank has informed me that its approach to mortgage arrears resolution is focused on ensuring the fair treatment of borrowers through a strong consumer protection framework and ensuring that lenders have appropriate arrears resolution strategies and operations in place.  The Code of...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Financial Services Regulation (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: For the purpose of this reply, I assume that the Deputy is referring to financial activities governed by the Insurance Distribution Directive (the IDD), the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) and the Central Bank of Ireland’s Consumer Protection Code 2012 (the CPC). In recent years, the European Commission has focused on Consumer Protection with regard the provision...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: State Properties Data (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: In response to the Deputy's question, my Department manages and controls the shared accommodation needs of both the Department of Finance and Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in respect of Departmental staff occupying  accommodation within the State’s buildings portfolio.  My Department  is not involved in any direct rental of buildings occupied...

Written Answers — Department of Finance: Stamp Duty (16 Jan 2018)

Paschal Donohoe: On 10 October 2017, in Budget 2018, the Deputy will be aware that I increased the rate of Stamp Duty on transfers of non-residential property from 2% to 6%. The Finance Act 2017 provides that, in general, the increased rate of duty applies in respect of all instruments relating to the transfer of non-residential property executed on or after 11 October 2017. The old rate of 2%...

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