Bank of Ireland has announced it is to begin a process today to repay the State €1.8bn.

The money is part of recapitalisation used to support the Irish banks at the peak of the economic crisis.
Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said the development will help build confidence in Ireland.

Bank of Ireland, along with other Irish lenders, was rescued by the State and part of the money lent to the institution was invested in preference shares.
The bank has been keen to repay the money before next March and will begin that process today. 

The State is to be repaid €1.3bn by private investors who will buy its preference shares and the bank will raise €580m by issuing new shares.

The State stake in the bank will be reduced by 1% to 14%. 

It also means the taxpayer ultimately profits from its investment in Bank of Ireland.