Business

Round-table discussions on future of banking in Northern Ireland set for new year

FSU general secretary, John O'Connell.

A ROUND-TABLE discussion on the future of banking in Northern Ireland is to take place in the new year.

The Irish Financial Services Union (FSU) has consistently called for new forums on both sides of the border in response to swathes of branch closures during 2021.

Speaking at the FSU’s triennial conference in Belfast on Saturday, general secretary John O’Connell said Finance Minister Conor Murphy had confirmed the engagement will take place in early 2022.

The conference took place in the city one week after Bank of Ireland closed its Keady branch, its 15th closure in Northern Ireland during 2021.

It followed four Danske Bank closures in late October.

Welcoming the announcement by the Department of Finance, Mr O’Connell said: “I commend Minister Murphy’s commitment to an open and transparent round-table process where all relevant stakeholders will have a say on the future of Banking in Northern Ireland.

“Retail banking is undergoing enormous change at the moment, and we need to ensure that the voice of stakeholders as well as the voice of shareholders is heard.

“The FSU look forward to participating in the discussions in the new year with active engagement from all stakeholders.”

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