People Before Profit have said that the need for a state bank is now glaring following the news that KBC is in discussions with Bank of Ireland regarding an exit from the Irish market.
Speaking in reaction to the news, Richard Boyd Barrett TD said: “The news that KBC is in discussions to potentially leave the Irish market and sell up to Bank of Ireland is worrying news for the bank’s customers and staff, future bank customers, communities around the country and the Irish banking system in general.
“It is clear that the private for-profit banking model is failing and that we need to look at an alternative banking model. The need for a state bank is now glaring and the government needs to take the steps to set up such a bank that would be run on a non-profit basis.”
Carlow PBP Cllr Adrienne Wallace added “The KBC exit follows the news that Bank Of Ireland are closing branches as they move services online. Many of these branches were in rural parts of Carlow and Kilkenny. Customers in these areas are being shafted and left isolated. These banks were bailed out for billions, they already charge one of the highest mortgage interest rates in the EU and customers are constantly getting hit with hidden charges. It really is time to rethink the banking model in Ireland.”