Writing in today’s Irish Times, property consultant Bill Nowlan writes:
Nama’s prime job is to get back the €54bn given to the banks to enable it to repay the ECB.
I don’t want to pick on Bill Nowlan because this kind of comment appears regularly in all our media outlets from commentators who are attempting to explain NAMA to the public. However, I do think it is worth pointing out that NAMA is not borrowing money from the ECB.
What I find odd about this is that a plan that really isn’t very complicated—the Irish government issues bonds to the banks in return for property-backed loans—has been described so often by government sources as a complicated operation involving the ECB that pretty much everyone now believes that this is the case. But really, it’s not.
I’m really not sure what I can say about this other than it’s pretty sad that a program involving spending €54 billion of public money is so poorly understood.