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Britain Recovers 85 Percent of Icesave Claims

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Britain Recovers 85 Percent of Icesave Claims

Money - Icelandic Króna

Photo: Páll Kjartansson

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Andrea Leadsom, confirmed yesterday that the British government has recovered a further GBP 1.36 billion (ISK 264 billion, USD 2.14 billion, EUR 1.71 billion) from the Landsbanki estate in Iceland, which operated as Icesave in the UK, following its collapse in 2008.

The government has now recovered 85 percent of its total claim from the Landsbanki estate.

The payment marks “another significant milestone in the government’s efforts to recover the costs to taxpayers of the financial crisis,” the statement from the HM Treasury reads.

“The government remains committed to recovering the full outstanding amount of the British taxpayer’s claim from the Landsbanki estate, and will continue to work hard to make this happen as soon as possible,” Leadsom promises in the statement.

The payment received yesterday will be used to pay down the national debt.

Icesave was a high-interest, internet-only saving scheme launched by Landsbanki in Britain and The Netherlands, operating under the EU’s single-market rules (since Iceland is a member of the European Economic Area).

When Landsbanki collapsed in October 2008, Icesave depositors were not fully covered by Dutch and British deposit insurance, relying instead on Iceland’s scheme.

The British government became the largest creditor to Landsbanki after fully refunding British retail savers with Icesave when the Icelandic deposit insurance failed to meet its obligations. The total payout amounted to GBP 4.5 billion.

“The government is on course to recover the full amount of our claim on the Landsbanki estate, which we expect to do by 2017,” the statement concludes.

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