Minister pushes for bank reform

Minister pushes for bank reform

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe plans to bring the Central Bank (Amendment) Bill — which targets widespread reform of the banking sector — to the Government for approval before the end of the year, after which it would progress to the Oireachtas for debate.

He said the timing would rely on Brexit constraints and other Oireachtas business.

Addressing a conference on the bill, he said the proposed senior executive accountability regime aspect of it would be a key driver in achieving cultural change in the sector.

However, he said there is “still some considerable distance to go” to reform banking culture.

Mr Donohoe said the loss of public confidence in the banks on the back of the tracker mortgage scandal had been “hardly surprising” and will take “considerable time and effort” to restore.

“The restoration of public trust in the financial sector is vital in the longer term. This process of reform should already be well underway,” he said.

We will strike the correct balance so as to ensure that Irish financial service consumers do not pay higher interest rates and charges than other European consumers.

"It is important for national competitiveness that interest rates on many households’ most significant outgoing, their mortgage, are kept as low as possible,” he said.

Mr Donohoe said consumers had paid dearly for the consequences of “light tough regulation” in the financial crisis a decade ago.

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