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ILCU President and CEO meet with Fianna Fáil Parliamentary Party

Posted on: 25 Nov 2021

ILCU President, Helene McManus, and ILCU CEO, Ed Farrell, met with the Fianna Fáil Parliamentary Party on Tuesday evening at the invitation of Minister Sean Fleming. The President reminded the meeting of the significant commitments to credit unions contained in the Programme for Government. In particular, it commits to review the “policy framework within which credit unions operate”. That policy framework was clearly indicated by the previous government when it concluded in two separate reports that credit unions are the obvious foundation for a community banking platform going forward.

The President stated that the appointment of a first ever Minister for Credit Unions is a big step forward and acknowledged that Minister Fleming has been very available to the League and credit unions. The President emphasised that the Government now has a golden opportunity and a chance to make the radical legislative change that will empower credit unions to deliver many more services.  She also outlined that the credit union movement is a national movement that is trusted and has the competence, the capital and the community base, to be a real community bank.

The CEO outlined that as banks now exit the market and close branches, credit unions’ ability to deliver local, flexible support matters more today than it ever has. Furthermore, with targeted support, the unique role of credit unions cannot only be strengthened, but unleashed to its fullest potential to re-ignite the economy, deliver the plan for government, and build a fair Ireland for future generations.

The CEO also detailed some of the challenges currently facing credit unions and proposed possible solutions adding that targeted assistance is now required for credit unions to modernise the legislative framework and enable new business opportunities, particularly in the area of lending. This can be achieved if legislators and regulators work together as the required changes are not solely a legislative matter.

In his concluding remarks the CEO echoed those of the President, that with the correct legislative and policy support from Government, the credit union movement can provide a sustainable community bank for the people of Ireland long into the future