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Nuacht & Imeachtaí

Minister for Small Business John Perry and Department of Finance to meet with business community in Dundalk on Demand for Bank Credit

3rd February 2012

The Minister for Small Business, John Perry, T.D., today (Friday) will chair meetings in Dundalk with invited representatives of the local and regional business community to discuss the demand for bank credit and to exchange views on access to credit for SMEs.

These are the first in a series of regional meetings being held by Minister Perry along with John Moran, head of the Banking Policy Division in the Department of Finance. The meetings will be attended by representatives of business, the banks and the State sector.

Minister Perry said “These meetings will provide a platform for an open exchange of views and genuine engagement between key stakeholders. The meetings will explore the findings of the Mazars Survey on Credit Demand published late last year by the Department of Finance and will discuss any further suggestions for actions that might be taken to improve access to credit for SMEs”.

“Government has taken a range of actions to recapitalise the banks in order to get them fit for purpose and functioning properly in order to support our enterprise sector. Ensuring the availability of credit to viable SMEs has been central to all the initiatives taken. This has included specific SME lending targets for the pillar banks which they have being achieving to date. The recapitalisation process introduced by the Minister for Finance has ensured that there is sufficient capacity available within the pillar banks to meet forecasted SME demand from viable businesses”.

Minister Perry noted, however, that many SMEs still had concerns about accessing bank credit and many hold the view that the banks are not open for SME lending.

Minister Perry said “These regional meetings should facilitate an open discussion on this critically important issue and provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to contribute to a broader understanding of the credit landscape”.

“Involving all stakeholders will better inform Government when considering if any further initiatives may be required”.

Concluding Minister Perry said: “The Government is committed to supporting our SME sector and will shortly launch its ‘Action Plan for Jobs’ which outlines a number of actions to strengthen and support our indigenous sector and focus on our number priority of job-retention and creation”.

Notes for Editors

The Mazars Survey on Credit Demand can be accessed on the Department of Finance website at http://www.finance.gov.ie/viewdoc.asp?fn=/documents/Publications/Reports/2011/mazarbanklend.pdf

The invitation list for the meetings is as follows:

  • A regional representative of SFA;
  • A regional representative of ISME;
  • A representative of each Chamber in the region;
  • A regional representative of Vintners Federation of Ireland (regions);
  • A representative of Licensed Vintners Association
  • A regional representative of Retail Excellence Ireland;
  • A representative of local CCEBs;
  • A representative from each of Dept of Transport, Tourism & Sport and D/JEI;
  • Local members of the Advisory Group on Small Business;
  • A regional representative of Fáilte Ireland and ITIC;
  • A regional representative of IFA;
  • Regional representatives of the three main banks;
  • A regional representative of Enterprise Ireland;
  • A regional representative of IDA and Forfás;
  • A regional representative of IHF.

For further information please contact:

Roisin McCann, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Press Office: 01 631 2200, press.office@djei.ie