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Presbyterian Mutual Society

Volume 508: debated on Thursday 8 April 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what recent assistance he has given to the Northern Ireland Executive in relation to the Presbyterian Mutual Society; (325423)

(2) what support his Department is giving to those with money deposited with the Presbyterian Mutual Society.

I have huge sympathy for investors in the Presbyterian Mutual Society whose investments are at risk following the entry of the Society into administration. The Prime Minister set up the Presbyterian Mutual Society Working Group in July 2009. That group, on which I sit alongside Treasury Ministers and Ministers from the Northern Ireland Executive, continues to try and find a solution to mitigate members’ losses, and to consider all proposals which could responsibly help those affected by the failure of the PMS.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what meetings he has had with (a) HM Treasury, (b) the Northern Ireland Executive and (c) the Presbyterian Church in Ireland on the Presbyterian Mutual Society in the last 12 months; (325425)

(2) what meetings he has had relating to the Presbyterian Mutual Society in the last 12 months;

(3) how many meetings he has had with savers from the Presbyterian Mutual Society in the last 12 months; and how many such savers he has met.

The Prime Minister and I have held a number of meetings in recent months with the First and Deputy First Minister to discuss the Presbyterian Mutual Society. Additionally, as well as the meetings of the PMS Working Group created by the Prime Minister, I have had a number of separate discussions with Treasury Ministers and with Ministers representing the Northern Ireland Executive to discuss the matter over the last 12 months. Colleagues on the Ministerial Working Group have met with groups of PMS investors, and I have met separately with a delegation from the Presbyterian Church, as have Treasury Ministers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many letters and e-mails relating to the Presbyterian Mutual Society his Department has received in the last 12 months. (325430)

Since 1 April 2009, my Department has received 235 items of correspondence relating to the Presbyterian Mutual Society.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he has met the General Secretary of the Presbyterian Mutual Society in the last 12 months. (325446)