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Honahan comments on centralised European response to bank crisis welcome but €64 billion too late for Ireland – Doherty

8 May, 2012 - by Pearse Doherty TD


Sinn Féin TD and Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty tonight welcomed Governor of the Central Bank Patrick Honahan's comments on a centralised European approach to recapitalising weak banks, saying the idea was close to Sinn Féin policy.

However, Doherty added that Governor Honahan's comments came €64 billion too late for Ireland.

Doherty said:

“With regards to the banking crisis across Europe, Sinn Féin has set out an alternative approach which would see a full disclosure of banking debts, a write down of debts where necessary and the ECB fulfilling the actual role of a central bank with regards to recapitalisation.

“I believe Governor Honahan's remarks tonight, while not identical to our policy, are moving closer to the Sinn Féin position and are to be welcomed.

“However, they come €64 billion too late for Ireland. Governor Honahan has been in position for a number of years now and during that time approximately €64 billion of taxpayers' money has been poured into Irish banks by this government and the last - and that's without mentioning the establishment of the €30 billion NAMA.

“I imagine Governor Honahan's comments were prepared long in advance of tonight, but it is striking that on a day when it looks as though Spanish banks need large capital injections, our bank Governor is talking about a Europe wide and not a national government response.

“If the Sinn Féin position had been implemented before now, we could have saved this state billions in recapitalisation. In the event of any future deal at a European level, or a scenario such as Governor Honahan's evolving, the first step of the Irish Government should be to make sure previous cash injections to Irish banks are refunded through the central European vehicle.”

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