Wednesday 17 January 2018

Chopra set to repeat criticisms of ECB

Ajai Chopra
Ajai Chopra
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Former IMF mission chief Ajai Chopra is expected to reiterate his view that the European Central Bank (ECB) over-stepped its remit and bounced Ireland into the 2010 bailout, in his evidence to the Banking Inquiry today.

Mr Chopra became the public face of the so-called Troika that arrived in Ireland in November 2010 as a senior member of the bailout monitoring team.

He was called to give evidence to the Inquiry after the Irish Independent revealed last April Mr Chopra's view that the ECB acted in an "outrageous" manner and pressured Ireland to commit to years of austerity back in 2010.

Mr Chopra told the Irish Independent in April that it was unfair for Irish taxpayers to suffer the cost of bailing out the banks when senior bondholders got their money back.

The stinging criticism, as well as Europe's refusal to allow Ireland to "burn" senior bondholders in the banks, is likely to be the focus of questioning from inquiry members today.

European Commission director general for economic and financial affairs Marco Buti will also give evidence before the inquiry today.

Finance Minister Michael Noonan will be the last witness on the final day of hearings at the inquiry.

He is expected to focus on the current Government's responses to the crisis since taking office in 2011.

Irish Independent

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