Let's Consider Public Banking, says Minister
As six branches of the Bank of Ireland close their doors across Laois and Offaly, Minister Pippa Hackett has called for proposals on public banking in the Midlands to be reconsidered.
“Today is a sad day for the staff of Bank of Ireland in Edenderry, Banagher, Clara, Mountrath, Durrow and Rathdowney” said Minister Hackett. “88
branches are closing nationwide and we have also seen KBC and Ulster bank pulling out of the market. It is clear that private banking is not serving us well, so it’s time to reconsider our options.”
Earlier this year the Minister raised the matter in the Seanad and pointed to the 2018 Local Public Banking in Ireland report which proposed a public banking pilot scheme in the Midlands, headquartered in Mullingar with branches in Tullamore, Portlaoise, Athlone and Longford.
“Public banks keep money in a community. What’s generated there, stays there and is reinvested in new ventures or expansions,” she said. “It works well for the small businesses we know as a community – cafés, hairdressers, bookshops, boutiques, food producers and tourism ventures.”
“A review of the Irish banking system has been promised by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe, and I will be recommending that public banking is part of that review,” says Minister Hackett. “It has long been a policy of the Green Party.”