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August 23, 2012

North Kildare Chamber call for full disclosure on lending to SMEs

Eilis Quinlan North Kildare Chamber has called on the government to immediately demand full and complete disclosure from the bailed out banks on lending to SMEs. Today’s announcement from the central bank, once again  confirms what the Chamber has continually been stating, that access to bank finance is being denied to viable but vulnerable businesses.

According to the Chamber President Eilis Quinlan “The report also highlights that we have some of the harshest lending conditions in the Eurozone. Now is the time for the Government to agree its line on lending conditions and ensure that all banks follow suit. The Government needs to set the standard for lending through the terms of its Enterprise Loan Guarantee Scheme which must be implemented without further delay. The SME sector, by its very nature, is more labour intensive then other sectors, and hence has always been the biggest job creating, and wealth creating, part of our economy.

“The Government must take a more hands on approach, and while the system is broken, insist on opening credit lines, servicing SME customers and play their part in economic recovery. Otherwise business will stagnate, employment will reduce even further, and the economy will suffer for a generation,. We continue to see our unemployment rate close to 15%, coupled with mass immigration.  This government is now 18 months in office and action needs to take place urgently”.

While Irish banks have been recapitalised with enormous fiscal injections, the truth of the matter is that these Irish banks STILL refuse to lend to viable small and medium enterprises”.

“The reality is that banks are performing at a very limited capacity in ensuring the payments system and ATMs are functioning, however when it comes to assisting the SME sector to grow, the bailed-out banks are continuing to refuse SMEs access to finance, thereby hindering any chance our economy has to recover.”

North Kildare Chamber demands that this Government insist on the two bailed out banks hitting their target of €7 billion in ‘new and increased facilities to SMEs’ and not accept distorted figures from the banks, Quinlan concluded