Becky Kealy: Cork Ulster Bank Closures Threaten Our Communities
Aontú Rep for Cork North-West, Becky Kealy, has expressed grave concern over the withdrawal of Ulster Bank from Cork, which will see the closure of its two branches and the loss of jobs in local communities and businesses.
Becky Kealy: “In my own County of Cork, the withdrawal of Ulster Bank will see the closure of seven branches and the loss of vital jobs to our local economy – both directly employed by Ulster Bank and those reliant on Ulster Bank. The withdrawal of Ulster Bank from Ireland has the potential to destabilise the Irish banking sector and to further isolate our already isolated rural and regional communities. Over 2,500 jobs are at risk of being lost, and 88 branches across the country at risk of closure. Isolated and regional communities will become even more isolated and increasingly reliant on Dublin and other urban hubs for basic banking services. By withdrawing from the Irish market, local economies are undermined and left exposed whilst the Irish banking sector becomes less and less competitive. In fact the Irish banking sector will now be whittled down to only two banks. In the event of another crash or bust in the banking sector, this over concentration in these two banks will only serve to exacerbate the damage from that bust.”
“Ulster Bank have refused to date to come before the Oireachtas Financial Committee, leaving many of us fearful for what the impact of their withdrawal will be. Especially, amidst the Covid-19 pandemic and an impending No Deal Brexit scenario. I am calling on the government to implement emergency measures to safeguard local communities like my own against the ramifications of the withdrawal of Ulster Bank. We need competition, we need to see new entrants into the market, we need a Public Banking Sector. The shrinking and unstable structure of the banking is a massive exposure that needs to be fixed now.”