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Banking: Asset Protection

Volume 715: debated on Monday 30 November 2009


My right honourable friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Alistair Darling) has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

In my 3 November Statement to the House, I set out a number of changes to the Royal Bank of Scotland’s proposed participation in the asset protection scheme. On the same day, the Treasury laid a minute in Parliament reporting the associated contingent liability. As this set out, while the material commercial issues had been agreed with RBS, full legal documents were at that stage still being finalised.

These legal documents have now been finalised and agreements were therefore signed last week. The agreements remain subject to state aid approval by the European Commission as well as approval by RBS’s shareholders.

I said in my Statement that I would provide Parliament with full details of the operation of the scheme when the final agreements are signed and approved by the Commission. I now expect to make this information available to Parliament by 7 December, possibly before the Commission gives its final state aid approval, depending on the timing of that approval. When I do so, legal agreements—subject only to any necessary redactions to protect commercial interests—will be placed in the House Library, together with information on the assets covered by the APS.