Minister for Finance, Mr Brian Cowen, T.D
Irish League of Credit Unions Annual Report 2006
The Minister for Finance, Brian Cowen, TD, today (Monday 16th April) launched the Irish League of Credit Unions Annual Report for 2006 at the League’s offices in Dublin.
Speaking at the launch the Minister said: “Credit unions have clearly shared in the transformation of the economy and Irish society over the last decade. This has been achieved by a continued commitment to the fundamental values of the credit union movement, a capacity and willingness to change in response to the changes in the needs of the communities you serve and above all by the hard work of 9,500 volunteers and the 3,500 staff”.
He continued: “As Minister for Finance I have sought to support the development needs of credit unions in order to help ensure that they remain an integral part of both the social and financial landscape in
“Ministerial Regulations I made in October 2006 increased nominations and small payments on the death of credit union members – an important measure when considered in the context of the growth of the average level of member’s savings since 1997.”
“Last month I enacted Regulations enabling credit unions to make Personal Retirement Savings Accounts (PRSAs) available to their members.”
“I am also glad to note substantial progress has also been made over the last year to address current restrictions on the amount of longer-term lending credit unions can carry out. This was identified by the League as a significant obstacle to meeting your members’ financial needs. Regulations to implement the recommended increases in current limits - subject to certain safeguards - are currently being drafted by my Department.”
“I also agreed in line with the recommendation that the definition governing longer-term lending contained in the Credit Union Act should be amended to ensure its interpretation is practical and workable. I will bring this matter to Government very shortly.”
The Minster concluded by saying that “many issues important to the credit union movement have been progressed on the basis of consultation and dialogue with the movement. I would like to take this opportunity to express my thanks to the Board and Executives of the League for their commitment to this partnership approach, the continuation and intensification of which will be essential to the successful delivery of continued change and reform for credit unions”.
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