Thursday, September 26 10:46:21
NAMA will redeem a further E750 million of its Senior Debt next week, bringing the total amount redeemed to E7 billion, the Agency's Chief Executive said today.
Speaking to the Public Accounts Committee of the Oireachtas, Brendan McDonagh said this means the Agency will have redeemed over 23pc of its E30 billion Senior Debt and is on course to meet its target of redeeming a total of E7.5 billion, 25pc of Senior Debt, by the end of the year.
"One of the principal measures of our progress is the repayment of our Senior Debt," said Mr McDonagh. Given its continued ability to generate cashflow from the portfolio, Mr McDonagh expressed confidence that NAMA would be in a position to redeem all of its Senior Debt by 2020 and thus eliminate the State's contingent liability. Mr McDonagh also said NAMA made a profit in the first half of 2013.
"Over the coming days, we will be submitting to the Minister for Finance our results for the first half of 2013 and, while I cannot disclose the specifics now, I am happy to report NAMA made a profit in the first half of the year".
The Agency has already reported full-year operating profits in each of 2011 and 2012.
Mr McDonagh also said that NAMA has generated E13.7 billion in cash for the taxpayer since it began operating. E9.2 billion was generated from disposals and a further E4.5 billion came from rental and other non-disposal income and continues to be self-funding and does not require cash from the Exchequer to meet its ongoing running costs.
NAMA debtors and receivers have sold over 2,000 individual properties in Ireland and are actively seeking buyers at present for Irish residential and commercial property worth E1.5 billion. This will increase by up to E400 million in the coming weeks when two portfolios - mainly high quality offices and residential property - will be brought to market, he said.
Mr McDonagh also stated 28 staff members, more than 10pc of all NAMA staff, have left the Agency so far this year. This is in addition to 22 staff members who departed in 2012.
"NAMA is a commercial organisation which must operate on behalf of the taxpayer in the international arena. Against that background, it faces potentially serious consequences arising from the scale of staff turnover and the quality and experience of the departing staff," he said.
"Our difficulty now is that we are losing many able and talented people and we are facing an uphill battle in retaining others. Replacing specialist staff is difficult; we cannot force property and banking specialists to join NAMA, nor can we force them to stay if better-paid opportunities arise elsewhere". Mr McDonagh said the Agency expects it will need to hire between 180 and 220 additional staff to work directly in NAMA, if the Agency acquires the bulk of the IBRC loan portfolio that is currently for sale by the Special Liquidators.