SFA makes submission to Retail Banking Review

July 18, 2022

The focus of the Retail Banking Review public consultation is on retail banking services provided by the retail banking sector. Retail banking services are defined, as the provision of current and saving accounts, consumer and Small and Medium-sized Enterprise credit, and mortgages.

SFA’s submission made the following points:

  • The retail banking sector is not currently meeting the needs of consumers and SMEs.
  • Concerns about the loss of relationship banking within the Irish retail banking sector, were raised.
  • SFA called for a fit-for purpose retail baking offering for the SME sector, that treats all businesses fairly, and is responsive to customer needs. The sector needs to be able to provide efficient technological solutions to ensure that customers can easily conduct banking online, but also needs to provide knowledgeable customer services when needed.
  • SFA raised concerns about the level of competition in the retail banking sector being appropriate and sustainable due to the withdrawal of Ulster Bank and KBC from the Irish market.
  • SFA acknowledged the rise in non-banks and increased access to government secured loans as improving availability of credit in recent years.
  • SFA raised the following issues regarding accessing credit from the retail banking sector, access to short-term credit, use of personal guarantor, not being prepared to back investment in fixed assets/expansion, investment in R&D and innovation.

SFA would like to thank members who contributed to this submission.