6 DECEMBER 2016
A senior delegation from ICSA, including national president Patrick Kent, general secretary Eddie Punch, rural development chairman Seamus Sherlock and Malcolm Thompson has held talks with high ranking officials from the Central Bank. The meeting which took place yesterday, 5 December, had been arranged to discuss issues arising from the sell-off of loans by key banks to private equity firms.
ICSA president Patrick Kent described the meeting as a positive one during which the concerns of the associations’ members were raised. Speaking following the meeting Mr Kent said “The legality and future conduct of equity funds was discussed in detail and we were reassured that farmers whose loans have been sold on are still entitled to fair treatment.”
ICSA rural development chairman Seamus Sherlock said “ICSA has concerns that the recent move by Ulster Bank to sell off loans to private equity firms will start a trend and be replicated by other key banks. Farmers have supported financial institutions for decades through good times and bad so we would be very disappointed if our banks are now considering abandoning some of their most loyal customers due to the downturn in farming profitability.”
ICSA general secretary Eddie Punch said “ICSA also had the opportunity to raise the question of facilitating banking transactions between Ireland and Iran due to the potential for exports of beef and sheepmeat there.” Mr Punch said ICSA will continue to engage with the Central Bank on this, and all matters discussed during the meeting.