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Fianna Fáil light touch regulation at fault for fleecing of consumers

23 September, 2010 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD


Speaking today after a report from a sub-committee of the Financial Regulator said that Irish consumers are being “mercilessly fleeced” through paying higher interest rates in order to rebuild the balance sheets of the banks, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Social Protection Aengus Ó Snodaigh said it is time for the Government to abandon the light touch regulation of the past.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

“The social costs of the Fianna Fáil dismantling of regulation and the failure to regulate properly are grave – hundreds of thousands of people are not only weighed down by crippling debt burdens but many are at risk of having their homes repossessed.

“Today’s comments by the consumer panel that consumers are being ‘mercilessly fleeced’ through paying higher interest rates in order to rebuild the balance sheets of the banks, is a sorry manifestation of the warnings that Sinn Féin has issued over the last twelve months.

“The people of this State cannot afford to be locked in wave after wave of mortgage interest hikes and they cannot afford high banking costs for basic services.

“This Government is presiding over a banking strategy where the two main banks are locked in a fundraising exercise, resulting in a squeeze on Irish consumers once more. Therefore it is imperative that the Financial Regulator is vigilant and that the consumer is put to the heart of a new regulatory culture – one that abandons the light-touch regulation of the past, one that does not facilitate or aid the risk-taking excesses of the banking sector and one that does not burden ordinary people for the failings of regulation, the banking sector or the Government.” ENDS

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