Thursday, 4 July 2019

Questions (106)

Denis Naughten


106. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Finance if he will meet with the president of an organisation (details supplied) with regard to the Central Bank legislation on the regulation of credit unions; the specific provisions in such legislation which recognise the fact that credit unions have a community remit rather than the shareholder remit of commercial banks; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29018/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

I wish to inform the Deputy that I have had extensive engagement with the credit union sector to date this year. In February, I held a credit union stakeholder engagement event which was attended by the President of the organisation that the Deputy refers to in his question. I also attended and spoke at that organisation's AGM in April. These events provided me with valuable feedback from the credit union sector itself. In addition the Credit Union Advisory Committee is currently conducting a survey of all credit union directors, which I hope will provide valuable data to inform future policy.

The Deputy will also be pleased to note that I intend to arrange a further stakeholder engagement session with the president of the organisation referred to, along with other credit union representative bodies, to cover a range of topics of importance to the sector including legislative and regulatory issues. Officials in my Department will engage with the organisation concerned in due course to arrange this meeting. The Deputy may also wish to note that officials within my Department have regular and extensive engagement with the sector, including the credit union representative bodies.

In terms of regulation, credit unions are regulated and supervised under the Credit Union Act, 1997. The Registrar of Credit Unions at the Central Bank is the independent regulator for credit unions. Within his independent regulatory discretion, the Registrar acts to support the prudential soundness of individual credit unions, to maintain sector stability, and to protect the savings of credit union members.