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Sinn Féin Query Investment of Irish Bank Assets

3 April, 2009 - by Martin Ferris TD

Kerry North Sinn Féin TD Martin Ferris has expressed dissatisfaction at the failure to provide figures on the proportion of Irish bank assets that are invested in Ireland as opposed to abroad. He was responding to a question which he placed regarding this to which the Minister for Finance stated that this information is not available for Irish banks.

Deputy Ferris said: “I placed the question as it is pertinent to what we know of the questionable operations of Irish banks and also the fact that there would appear to be a considerable amount of wealth in this country or owned by Irish people that is contributing little or nothing to the economy. It is an historical fact that prior to the establishment of the IDA and the attraction of foreign industrial capital that only around a third of Irish bank assets were actually invested here. This again is a major problem as many foreign firms close down their operations here.

“It would be interesting to know whether the low level of investment of Irish assets in the Irish economy has changed, particularly as the vast bulk of the more than €40 billion in value of the top 50 most wealthy Irish people as listed by the London Times last year is held by people who are tax exiles and who for the most part have their investments either abroad or in non productive assets here.” ENDS

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