NI business circles the wagons over Nama

Amid fears that NI securities could be discounted in loan transfers to Nama, an advisory committee will be set up in two weeks to represent NI business interests in the matter, says local Institute of Directors chair Joanne Stuart. Bro McFerran President of the NI Chamber of Commerce warns:

There was an assumption previously in Northern Ireland that a business with property loans would be insulated from Nama because it was UK-based, even if that loan was with an Irish bank,” he said. “The Business Alliance in Northern Ireland has been getting the message out that local businesses cannot afford to ignore Nama, because it could very well be coming to you even if you have a performing loan – and that in itself is one of the big issues.
“The level of discount that could be applied by Nama to securities based in Northern Ireland in the months ahead is a major concern here.”

A major sign of NI’s exposure is Allied Irish’s efforts to sell First Trust, as reported in the Bel Tel. Economist John Simpson supports a sale to Dankse Bank, the owners of Northern Bank. AIB need to raise 7.4 billion euros for its balance sheet by the end of the year. Last month, Brian assured Sammy that there would not be a firesale of NI assets.