Speaking after meeting with the Credit Review Office at the Jobs Committee, Peadar Tóibín TD, Sinn Féin spokesperson for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation said:
“Today at the committee we heard from the Credit Review Office and the Irish Banking Federation that in the last two years there has been a reduction in the amount of loans.
“Since being established the Office has dealt with 175 applications by SMEs for credit that was refused by banks. Of these, the CRO recommended that 55% be overturned and credit released to the business. There remains a significant disconnect between the credit experience of Irish business and the government response to it.
“We also know that loans are more expensive for business here, than the Euro average, providing a significant barrier to access to finance. This is despite the government ploughing €64 billion of taxpayers’ money into the banking system.
“It is clear that a significant amount of healthy businesses are being dragged down by legacy property debts that are not being parked, written down or refinanced for the long term. This is costing indigenous Irish jobs.
“The banks are refusing to listen to the government whether the issue is dealing with home loans or businesses. It is time for the government to get to grips with the banks and use their major shareholder status to direct them. It is time that the money injected into the banks was put to work on behalf of our people and economy.”
Notes to Editors
The Credit Review Office, was established following the December 2009 budget to be a simple and effective review process for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), sole traders and farm enterprises that have been refused credit from banks participating in the NAMA scheme, and to examine credit policy to assist the Minister.