Bank of Ireland to cut 750 jobs

Bank of Ireland is to lay off 750 staff across the UK and Ireland, it confirmed today.

The finance house said the redundancy scheme was part of wider plans to secure billions in state aid and become more efficient.

In a statement, the bank said the lay-offs would be voluntary.

"As the Bank achieves its objectives to continue to become more focused and efficient, regrettably, this will mean a reduction of 750 in the overall number of people employed.

"The bank anticipates that the reduction can be achieved over a period of two years in areas affected by business change across the group in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland and Great Britain."

Yesterday, Bank of Ireland got the green light from European chiefs for a restructuring process which includes selling New Ireland Assurance and ICS Building Society.

The bank said it had been involved in extensive negotiations with the Irish Bank Officials Association (IBOA) to strike a deal on lay-offs and pay.

The arrangement will see existing pay restraints continue, with reviews to take place in April and December next year.

The IBOA said the 750 job cuts were disturbing.

The group's general secretary Larry Broderick said staff with Bank of Ireland are being asked to pay a high price for mismanagement.

"IBOA will be scrutinising any specific proposals for job reductions with a view to securing alternative arrangements wherever possible," he said.

"It is incumbent on senior management to learn the lessons from past mistakes in order to bring about a fundamental change in the culture that has operated in Bank of Ireland and brought it to the brink of collapse.

"While the prospects for Bank of Ireland look better now than they have for some time, this will be a false dawn unless there is a restoration of traditional banking values such as prudence and integrity - which underpins an approach to customers which places a premium on consistent service rather than short-term profit."

Mr Broderick said rank-and-file staff are being targeted with substantial job losses, changes to pension benefits and restrictions on pay.

IBOA officials will meet next week to review the restructuring plan.


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