Irish League of Credit Unions call for relief measures for credit union members
Posted on: 20 Mar 2020
The Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU), which represents 226 credit unions in the Republic of Ireland is today (Friday 20th March) calling on the Department of Finance and the Central Bank to adopt a pragmatic and sympathetic regulatory approach to enable credit unions to offer flexible loan arrangements and other relief measures to their members during this unprecedented crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Credit union members across Ireland are facing into financial difficulties arising from unemployment and other hardships resulting from the current pandemic. In an effort to assist these members, the ILCU met with the Central Bank yesterday and the Department of Finance this morning to request consideration of a number of relief measures in respect of regulatory capital requirements, repayment forbearance and loan impairment provisioning to facilitate credit unions in responding to the needs of their members in these unprecedented times.
“ILCU Credit unions have proved their collective resilience through the last economic downturn and they want to continue to provide financial services and supports to their members at this difficult time. They will endeavour to maintain continuity of services for members throughout the current crisis. To enable them to do so will require cooperation from the government and the Central Bank” said ILCU CEO Ed Farrell. “One pragmatic way that credit unions could be supported is by a commitment from the Central Bank that they will revisit the capital requirement of credit unions as the pandemic evolves. Credit unions in the Republic of Ireland have the highest regulatory capital requirements of any financial institutions in Ireland.”
Ed Farrell continued, “Credit unions want to do everything that they can to assist their members through the current COVID-19 crisis. Members who are experiencing financial difficulties or who are anticipating that they may be facing into such difficulties in the coming weeks, should make contact with their credit union immediately to discuss what arrangements can be put in place for them. In the interests of social distancing, I would urge members to make contact by phone, email, or on line in the first instance and if a face to face meeting is required an appointment will be made by the credit union”.
The ILCU currently represents 226 credit unions affiliated credit unions in the Republic, with total assets of €16.22 billion, and total savings of €13.55 billion.
There are 3.16 million members of ILCU credit unions, and they have loans outstanding of €4.46 billion.
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