Brexit ‘will see Ir­ish bank­ing sec­tor grow’

Belfast Telegraph - - BUSINESS - BY COLM KELPIE

BREXIT is likely to lead to a re­bal­anc­ing of the pro­file of the Ir­ish bank­ing sec­tor, with an in­crease in op­er­a­tions and a jump in the size of the sec­tor as a whole, the Cen­tral Bank has said.

An in­ter­nal re­port from the Bank’s Brexit Task Force, pub­lished by the reg­u­la­tor, noted that en­gage­ment with firms po­ten­tially look­ing to shift or set up op­er­a­tions here had lev­elled off ahead of the sum­mer months.

But it said the in­ten­sity of the in­ter­ac­tion with in­ter­na­tional firms that had al­ready ex­pressed in­ter­est in mov­ing here had sub­stan­tially ramped up.

There has also been an in­crease in the num­ber of banks look­ing to en­gage on the po­ten­tial es­tab­lish­ment of in­vest­ment firms in Ire­land, the doc­u­ments state.

“Based on en­gage­ments to date and depend­ing on ac­tual ap­pli­ca­tions re­ceived, it is likely that there will be a re­bal­anc­ing of the pro­file of the Ir­ish bank­ing sec­tor, with a more even split between the to­tal size of bank­ing as­sets bro­ken down by in­ter­na­tional whole­sale bank­ing ac­tiv­i­ties ver­sus do­mes­tic re­tail fo­cused bank­ing ac­tiv­i­ties,” the Bank noted.

The Bank’s Brexit Task Force is made up of rep­re­sen­ta­tives from di­vi­sions across the Bank,

Warn­ing: Gabriel Fa­gan

and re­ports to the Cen­tral Bank Com­mis­sion on a quar­terly ba­sis. The Bank’s chief econ­o­mist Gabriel Fa­gan said yes­ter­day that the prob­a­bil­ity of a very se­vere Brexit can’t be ruled out.

He also said there could be knock-on ef­fects from the UK’s EU de­par­ture that haven’t re­ally been thought of, in­clud­ing ques­tions over the le­gal ba­sis for in­ter­na­tional con­tracts.

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