Ex-IMF official Ajai Chopra set to give evidence at banking inquiry

Ex-IMF official Ajai Chopra set to give evidence at banking inquiry

The former International Monetary Fund (IMF) official who designed Ireland’s banking bailout is to give evidence to the banking inquiry in Dublin next week.

Ajai Chopra drew up and monitored the financial rescue programme from 2010 to 2013.

In 2010 the country required a bailout worth €85bn from a troika of international financial institutions.

Mr Chopra, who has left the IMF and is now an academic, will give evidence to the inquiry, which is probing the causes of the crisis, on Thursday as it concludes public evidence.

Inquiry chairman and parliamentarian Ciaran Lynch said: “These witnesses representing all key institutions and relevant stakeholders, along with relevant experts, have brought a wide range of perspectives to bear on the Committee’s comprehensive examination of Ireland’s banking crisis.”

Finance Minister Michael Noonan is also due to give evidence to the inquiry this week.

The bailout was set up by the IMF, European Commission and the European Central bank (ECB) after Ireland experienced a systemic banking crisis in 2008.

The Government gave the banks a blanket guarantee at the height of the crisis to stop them collapsing. It followed a bubble largely created by an over-heated property market.

An ex-finance department chief has told the inquiry that the country was pushed into its international bailout in 2010.

Austerity imposed after that deal led to slashed public spending, loss of economic sovereignty and many job losses.

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